January 17, 2013

IS GOD GOOD

the “Paradoxal Monkey Trap”

With much hurt, death and failure so easily apparent in a world meant to be fashioned by a Good God… Is God really good?

Life can be complex at times, with answers appearing to be equally as confusing.  Plain and simple. Life is hard sometimes.  But to be fair, questions, like above appear to make life more convoluted than enlightened.  So I really want to test the validity of such a question. To do that, must we not also apply that same question to other institutions and beliefs?

Lets look at government, money, love, marriage, children and so on through the same viel and questioning as when we access God.  Could any of those be deemed good?  Without money – there would be nothing to profit from war; one could not buy guns or drugs to kill, or how many times in human history has government gone corrupt and failed the very individuals it was created to serve.  Or how many times has presumed love failed, hurting many in the process. Do we throw out government, love and money then…?  Just because man has taken advantage of and perverted such institutions, does that make them inherently evil.

Just because an inanimate object or nature; such as a knife, fire or candlestick (with Miss Peacock in the library) can be used for destruction does not make those objects in themselves destructive.  Have they also not been used to create light, craftsmanship, provide food and beauty?

Or does this question have failure written into the very nature of it…?

The questioning of God’s Goodness, in it-self, was never created to produce answers, but only created to produce more questions, equaling unbelief.  The subjectivity of it’s nature makes it a slippery little devil.  Ha.  It’s a “Monkey Trap.”  Once you grab a hold of such a question you are trapped / enslaved by it until you finally choose to let go.  

Whatever you look for you will discover.  Ask any mid-school teacher if kids are evil – ha.  When walking through the forest I can find 1000’s dead of branches and fossils, once alive.  If that’s all I chose to focus on, would I not innately believe the forest was dying?

Please look up!

How sad that I’ve walked most my life this way, failing to see the beauty all around because I chose to only look for the hurt and death behind every door.  (I believe we do this to protect ourselves from more hurt and disappointment)

So…

to a God that sums up His whole Law, the whole Bible with this: “love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul and mind, and LIKE-WISE (to the same value) love others as yourself” (Galatians 5:14; Matthew 22:36-40)… I say I’ve been focusing on all the bad in something meant to create so much good!

Let us be a people that finally rise up to use a belief and institution for the greatness it was created for.

Advertisements
January 16, 2013

Why I Raise My Children Without God

http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-910282?hpt=hp_c3

In response to the article posted above by CNN – Jan 16th, 2013.  I’ve already responded to most her claims in other posts, yet just one thing left to say….

It’s sad that individuals who claim to know a “loving” God act so distinctly apart from the nature of the God they assert to know.  That in itself is a tragedy, but my fear is, that this article asks that such beliefs of religion be kept at home, while hers are justifiably paraded. Even in humanism this must be deemed injustice; to allow one party of belief to freely expressing theirs’ while concurrently creating a culture that denies another the same luxury is hypocritical.  This has been seen before in history and most always generates an unfavorable outcome.  Whatever your beliefs, lets not repeat the past.

What say you…

December 29, 2011

LAWS OF ATTRACTION

IF ONLY LIFE WERE AS EASY AS FISHING

-by what you attract someone, is what they will expect from you when ya get em-

When fishing, the choice of bait determines the type of catch.  A good fisherman knows which bait attracts which fish and thereby adjusts their lure to suit the environment and conditions of such a task.  Clearly, people are not fish, yet still proves to be somewhat analogous with life, faith and relationships.  What you use to fish for a mate is the same bait they’ll expect from you to sustain and keep the catch.  Please force your way thru this to the end, I promise there is redemption in this somewhere.

If you use the physical to attract a partner, do they not have a right to expect the physical from you when caught?  There are in-numerous lawsuits daily for false advertisement and yet we expect different conditions when we date and in life.  How you advertise determines the customer you’ll attract and if selling meat (every pun intended) why expect anything less than a carnivore?

Not to be insulting, but if you keep catching sleaze-bags, check what your fishing with.  Now given, there are just plain dirty fish out there, but, you can not expect the catch of the century in a shallow dirty pond.  If you keep bringing home bottom feeders its probably time to go to deeper waters.  Hope this isn’t getting too cheesy… but…

If your fishing in a bar, expect them to drink.  If fishing at a strip club, expect them to lust.  If you cheat on your current partner to finally find your perfect match, expect them to cheat on you, because you’re a cheater too.

Every time I get frustrated with my wife if I take a long enough time to truthfully search myself, I can easily find the same issue in my life.  Masked differently because I’m man and she is woman, she’s extrovert and I’m introvert, but none-the-less the same flaw.

Romans 2:1 states, “you who judge practice the same thing.” Basically, single-handedly stripping all humanity of the right to feel justified and play the victim.  NOT saying there are not true victims out there and there are not exceptions to every rule, but just throwing out a common law – you know, like gravity (which, by the way, does have exceptions to it).

Sadly, in most cases, we can only attract what we are.  If you don’t have the bait in your arsenal to begin with – then you’d never of caught that particular type of fish.

My intention is not to belittle anyone’s pain or relationship issues but just bring to light our humanity.  WE ARE ALL MESSED UP in some way and will continue to be until death, hence the need for Christ.  Our goal as humanity in not perfection, but simply to learn how to live with imperfection, practiced through the revelation of Grace.  Only when we truly accept our own broken nature, will we be able to accept someone else’s.

So before we blame another, or our spouse for how messed up they’ve made our life, lets take a long hard look into ourselves to find the same demons in our own closet. Reconciliation in broken relationships and life always comes from giving others the same grace we demand for ourselves; stripping away the fear of failure … Allowing victory in another’s humanity will only create the same outcome in our own. We are all searching for someone to stay with us through all our shortcomings, through thick and thin, so search no more, look in the mirror and find that person is standing before you.

 

December 28, 2011

EYEWITNESS ACCOUNT OF GOD

IS EYEWITNESS PROOF ENOUGH TO PROSECUTE?

Discover magazine just came out with an article “85% of the universe is missing. The world’s top physics detectives are teaming up to find it.”

Interesting is that of the 15% we have defined – we hardly understand it!  Much of my textbooks in biology and physics were full of question marks.  We do not fully understand how the stomach operates, or how to cure a common migraine headache, or even decisively decide on how many planets our solar system has.  We do  have numerous ways to numb or mask problems but appear to have very few to solve them.  If you understood only 15% of how a computer operated would we be able to build one?  Yet this is what I believe many do scientifically with the questions of the unknown, God and the supernatural.   How many generations before us of brilliant scientists and thinkers have lived and died, only to be found wrong in the coming generations?  Will our generation be any different?

With that being said, how are we so certain there is no God.  Why would anyone gamble eternity on such little assurance?  If I only studied 15% of my class materials would I really expect to pass the exam?  I am not trying to belittle the scientific but merely pointing out that in itself, I believe there to be inadequate evidence to confidently disprove the existence of God, and thereby humanity’s lack of need for one.

Take for example, the experience and perception of love, beauty or pain.  These have moved humanities heart and money beyond reason, and these  factors have historically built and / or destroyed civilizations.  Yet, are they not completely subjective to the one experiencing them?  What is laughable or beautiful to one is not necessarily to another.  This is especially seen when looking at humor across cultural and national boundaries.  The same could be said of the experience of a movie or the beauty of a sunrise.  However, no one would question their existence merely due to the subjectivity of their experience.  Scientifically we can hormonally measure the effect of such stimuli, and therefore validate their existence, but why have countless generations and billions of individuals experienced God hormonally yet we deny Him the same luxury? If we were to apply the same rigorous scientific tests and apologetics to them, as we do to the debate of God, would we really have enough concrete evidence to prove their existence?

Another example of where human perception and testimony is a legitimate source of evidence would be in court.  Eyewitness testimony is legally enough to prove one’s innocence or guilt in the court of law, so why not in the Case for God?

Even with this there will always be holes in every argument.  I can name ten things that can be debated with my own reasoning.  Like why so many testimonies of other religions then, are they all right?  But that’s the beauty of this debate and about the discussion of God or no God.  Will we ever have enough knowledge to absolutely know?  Looking at the history of humanity I would bet on no.  In every area of science and reason, the more we discover, the more questions we appear to accumulate.  In other words, every answer we find to an existing problem only seems to attract 100 more questions.

However, with bias, I would object that it is revealing to me that Jesus is considered a prophet in most every religion, while most others can’t even transcend their own.  Also, as mentioned above, this would be the point of faith and the Bible.  It is written in a way that cannot be figured out or formulated, salvation impartial to intelligence. Both, cannot be rationalized to a point of complete understanding, only leaving us with one single option, faith.  In that aim, only, over knowledge, will humanity finally have enough.

Imagine yourself back in middle school, it’s P.E. and everyone is getting picked but you.  Everything inside you breaks with the realization that you’ll soon be last and most likely never have the ability and no-how to be picked first.  You search for some form of talent but seem to find none.  What are your options?

In faith and belief, God bypassed reason and ability, by putting in everyone’s reach happiness now, which even the brilliant strive to achieve, only to fall short.  That’s the only fair way to do it.  If based on ones ability to reason, then the unintelligent are damned and given no opportunity for joy, happiness, and salvation for that matter.  If based on faith alone, we ALL have an opportunity for salvation thereby, to know love and give it.  Humanities greatest exploit will not be an acquisition of knowledge, or one of engineering feat but that of learning to believe and to love.   Let’s just say, I am so much happier with this option for humanity versus what survival of the fittest offers.


December 13, 2011

VIRGIN BIRTH OF THE UNIVERSE!!!!

ORIGIN WITHOUT GOD

WHERE  IN  THE  HEAVENS  ARE  WE  FROM

With so many topics for debate over God, evolution, creation where do we even start?  If there is a God then what are the facts that prove His existence and if we are products of evolution does that necessarily disprove God?  So to filter through all this I’m going to attempt framing the discussion with several analogies to get this thing focused.

If someone came up to me and said “do you want a billion dollars you idiot,” I really do not believe too many of us would waste a minute on the insults but instead cut straight to the weightier matter – which is how do I get a billion dollars?

OR

If a man came up to me and asked, “what do you want to wear before I kill you?”  Again, the question would not be “what should I wear” but would be “why do you want to kill me?” That cuts straight to the heart of the matter and addresses the point that ones life depends on.

For the topic of GOD or NO GOD, Hitchens, Dawkins and others alike do a great job at defining many of the variables of such a question –whether God is good, picking apart the flaws of religion and even addressing evolution opposed to the creation account, but what I keep running into, is that many have little advice or evidence that would firmly establish there is no God.  They do hit attributing factors, but appear to be more caught up in the insults of history and thereby ignore the direct question.  One can come to the conclusion that God is not good, but still be left with the question, is there a God?

I really believe the origin of the universe is that billion-dollar question and is the constant we are looking for that would likely wash out many of the variables.  If someone could establish another viable option for how the universe was created then there would be no need for God.

So, at the birth of our universe whether you believe in the Big Bang, Evolution, creation or some combination of all three you are still stuck with the question of what started it all.

For the Big Bang, can nothing collide into nothing and explode, creating what we have now? For Evolution, where did the first organism come from that began the evolutionary process?  In other words, can something evolve from nothing?” Or if some other life form started ours, what started their’s?  Can Evolution, the Big Bang or other intelligent life be responsible for Origin, which by definition precedes their vary existence?  With all three hypotheses you are still left with no answer for origin, yet some treat them as if they are.

Even with the scientific method of deductive reasoning, and with the facts at hand and projected to come, one is still left with the answer, no.  Evolution and the Big Bang could be the direct outcome of the origin of our universe but they cannot reasonably or factually account for the creation of it.  It is funny to me that the Virgin Birth of Christ is so openly mocked and belittled as being irrational yet some expect us to believe the same about our universe.  With no factual alternative for the origin of humanity they want us to blindly believe in science, that the universe just appeared in time and space with no parents to birth it. If this is the best explanation that 4.5 billion years of evolution can give us then we as humanity are screwed.

I am NOT against science in any stretch of the imagination – I actually love it and study it, but it appears to me that scientific fact is falling a little short on this topic. Is it not in Science that in order to debunk an existing theory you must offer a better alternative – that not only explains all the attributes of the existing theory but improves upon it.  So how has science done this with the idea that God created what we have now?

The powers of reason leave us with faith as the only option. We have no evidence and no observations that even remotely lead us to discovering an answer for origin, yet the atheist or “anti-theist” community is happy leaving it to our imaginations for the answer.  So, even in atheist’s finest efforts we are still left with believing in something we cannot see.

I would even be so bold to suggest that Agnosticism and Atheism require even more faith.  At least God gives us a reasonable explanation for origin while the others leave us with the option of waiting another 1000 years before hoping to find something.

The point of it all – one can win the argument that an individual can live life on this earth peacefully without God, but the larger question is can the same be said for eternity?

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

IS THERE ANOTHER OPTION BESIDES GOD THAT CAN EXPLAIN THE BEGINNING OF IT ALL?

December 13, 2011

PORNO PORNO PORNO

A GENERATION IN WHICH NUDE MEN & WOMEN ARE THE NEWEST HOUSEHOLD COMMODITY

My wife just had a rough day at work. She comes home, puts her keys away, slips into something more comfortable and then walks into the living room to find me and the children hanging out with a half naked woman.  As usual, she casually walks by, sits on the couch, puts her feet up, and asks what’s cooking.  After dinner, we clean up, tell the children to get their homework and meet us in the study.  By the time we get to the room our children are already there ready to begin their work.  Sitting next to them are three fully nude models, they look up at us; we smile and prepare for one more great night of family bonding!

Please tell me the above paragraph was a bit off-color to you. Yet somehow, we as Americans –yet again- actually found a way to subject our-selves to this daily. Whether just for 20 seconds on a commercial or while watching our favorite T.V. show, flipping through a newspaper ad, or when trying to Google any female’s name we’ve somehow conceded to the idea that scantily clothed individuals is an acceptable and normal part of our day.

Prehistoric prude or not, I still think most would agree with me that some entertainment goes too far, and there should at least be tighter censorship of sexually explicit advertisement and media to protect the eyes of our youth.  Right? 

Consider this, the average age of first Internet exposure to pornography is 11 yrs old1.

  • “90% of 8-16 year olds have viewed porn online1.”
  • “The average teenager spends three to four hours per day watching television and 83% of the programming most frequently watched by adolescents contains some sexual content3.”
  • “87% of university students are having sex over webcams, instant messenger or the telephone5.”
  • “41 percent of surveyed adults admitted they felt less attractive due to their partner’s pornography use6
  • “August 7,2006: 50% of all Christian men and 20% of all Christian women are addicted to pornography. 

……………………………………..

Now, I understand the need for sexual education but truly do not believe this happens by putting a child in front of a naked individual and letting it work itself out. 

If a man or women were to walk out into a public forum fully exposed, they would be arrested on the spot and cited for indecent exposure? In some cases, for this vary incident, individuals have to register as sex offenders. While the judicial system takes care of obvious perpetrators, the safety of our community is still compromised by the millions that are freely allowed to trespass (with or without my consent) through my home and public place via computer, phone, our children’s Sony PSP and T.V.  To further frame this; if a person were to send a text or email to a bunch of random people fully or partially exposing them-self to the individual there would be legal repercussions. So. What’s the difference between a text and a picture on T.V. or the Internet? Is it not the same form of media?  

Corporations strategically place sexually explicit photos to be stumbled upon, and when there are complaints they leave it up to the consumer to pay for the cleanup.  I mean, try to Google the word milk without getting some sexually suggestive picture. They know children will stumble upon these images, yet they do it anyway.  Just as I would want to protect my child of sexual exposure from a neighbor or teacher, I also desire to do the same over the Internet and T.V. 

Now, obviously intent is everything, so there is a difference between a sexual predator and the average CEO, but I would still argue that both have equally adverse effects (especially considering the statistics).  Corporations know “sex sells,” they understand the conditioning response of associating their product with sexual imagery, playing out Pavlov’s Bell to a textbook T.  They sell sex because it produces results, long lasting results on consumer behavior that are time tested.  If no results they would not continue to do it.

Every day individuals are victims of indecent exposure yet their voice is effortlessly drowned out by the sound of money being made.  To sum it up, “It is estimated that Americans now spend somewhere around $10 billion a year on adult entertainment, which is as much as they spend attending professional sporting events, buying music or going out to the movies9.” I really believe the porn industry can afford their own clean up.  As we all know, I’m sure they would be bitterly opposed to packing up and disbanding forever, but I believe we can at least agree that porn and other sexually explicit advertising should be done in a way that guarantees children will not be exposed to it.  What about some good old fashioned Marketing Responsibility!

I’m extremely thankful for institutions like International Foundation For Online Responsibility, XXXChurch and Fred H. Cate’s ICM Registry but unfortunately there efforts are not enough.  Until the pocket books and purses (for the ladies) of the companies that advertise in this way are affected, this situation statistically proves to only escalate.

WHAT SAY YOU? 

PORN OR NO PORN, OR SHOULD THEIR BE TIGHTER RESTRICTIONS ON THE TELEVISION AND INTERNET FOR ANY TYPE OF SEXUALLY EXPLICIT MEDIA?

MORE STATISTICS:

  • “Most girls who enter the porn industry do one video and quit. The experience is so painful, horrifying, embarrassing, humiliating for them that they never do it again4.”
  • “39 million homes receive the adult channels in scrambled form, while the number of children with potential exposure to such images is about 29 million2.”
  • “60% of men and 40% of women are involved in extramarital affair8.”
  1. http://familysafemedia.com/pornography_statistics.html#anchor5
  2. Morality Continues to Decay.  Barna Research Group, November 3, 2003 from http://www.blazinggrace.org/cms/bg/pornstats
  3. Gary Rose, CEO of The Medical Institute, as reported by Focus on the Family 7/8/2005 from http://www.blazinggrace.org/cms/bg/pornstats
  4. Luke Ford, quoted by CBS News from http://www.blazinggrace.org/cms/bg/pornstats
  5. Reuters, Ontario Canada, February 16, 2006. From http://www.blazinggrace.org/cms/bg/pornstats)
  6. Marriage Related Research, Mark A. Yarhouse, Psy.D.  Christian Counseling Today, 2004 Vol. 12 No. 1. From   http://www.blazinggrace.org/cms/bg/pornstats
  7. From the results of a ChristiaNet poll reported by Marketwire.com from http://www.blazinggrace.org/cms/bg/pornstats
  8. http://www.womansavers.com
  9. http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/11/21/60minutes/main585049.shtml