“Some people have a way with words; others have not way with the words.”
– A. Baker
– A. Baker
Where do I begin?
Let’s start with the facts at hand, shall we?
A special election for state senator was held in my home state of Tennessee, yesterday. In that election Gayle Jordan (D) was soundly defeated by Shane Reeves (R)… 13,139 to 5,179.
What made this election gain so much attention? What even led the great antagonist and atheist Richard Dawkins to chime in with insulting recollections of the 1925 Scopes “Monkey” Trial in Dayton, TN?
Gayle Jordan is an atheist, that’s why.
But Gayle Jordan (Democrat) is not just any atheist; she is the Executive Director of Recovering from Religion, a group dedicated to helping people transition from “faith to reason.”
(Sarcasm warning) Shame on those backward, hayseed, unenlightened, anti-reason, anti-freethought, banjo-playing hicks for electing a pro-life, heterosexual, Republican white male!
Well, since it’s all about “reason,” let’s discuss the whole reason this story go my attention. What got me was the reason given for Gayle Jordan’s transition to becoming a “happy heathen.”
From her bio: “Gayle is a former Southern Baptist who left the faith 10 years ago when her then-teenagers began asking questions she could not answer.”
That’s the whole reason I decided to sit myself down in front of a keyboard this morning – she ditched her faith because she couldn’t answer her teenagers’ questions. She said it, not me.
So, let’s ponder that for a moment or two. She was a mother with teenagers, and just because they asked her some difficult questions about the Bible, faith, and religion (because it’s safe to assume they weren’t actually thinking original thoughts but were influenced by anti-religious evangelists such as Dr. Dawkins and others), she threw in the towel and completely changed her worldview?
Good thing that kind of radical shift doesn’t take place every time a young skull full of underdeveloped brain matter queries a quandary.
Teen: Mom, if a tree falls in the woods, but no one is around to hear it, will Al Gore still blame it on global warming?
Mom: Oh my gosh, dear! I don’t know! I guess I can no longer believe in forests.
Teen: Mom, who were the giants in Genesis 6:4? Were they aliens, angels, or mythical creatures covered in rock who helped build Noah’s ark?
Mom: You know, I have no idea, honey! That’s a really good question! I guess I’m gonna have to become a bona fide heathen and use my comfortable heels to crush the multiple pocket watches lying on the beach as I walk over them into oblivion.
But I guess I’m thinking too hard.
I don’t want to get too TMI-ish, but as we get older the doctors say we should do more self-examinations. Have you ever been told this?
You ladies are regularly told by your physicians to check for unusual or suspicious lumps in certain places. We men are told the same thing, just not as often (it’s not a subject we’re comfortable with).
But despite the awkwardness, all of us need to be reminded that it’s our responsibility to examine ourselves in between doctor visits. Fact is, embarrassing as it may be to discuss, a self-examination can mean the difference between life and death.
But as awkward as it is to discuss our bodies, the spiritual lives of people tend to be much more private and less likely to be examined. Yet, what does the Apostle Paul (a true Doctor of the Faith) recommend?
Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? – 2 Corinthians 13:5 (KJV)
Or, as another translation interprets it…
Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves. Surely you know that Jesus Christ is among you; if not, you have failed the test of genuine faith. (NLT)
Believe it or not, there are many, many people who think they are in perfect spiritual health, but in reality, they are terminal. Consider the following examples.
Are you like Bob or Mary? What about Sharon or Frank and Karen? Are the above people spiritually healthy, or could there be hidden cancer not yet removed?
Remember Ephesians 2:8-9? Works don’t save people; faith in Christ does. It’s not about the life you live; it’s Who’s life is in you.
Look, I’m not an M.D. or an apostle, but if you’d like my advice, here’s what I have to offer.
Don’t neglect the health of your body… or your soul.
On Friday my middle daughter, Katie, underwent surgery to have her gallbladder removed. We appreciated all your prayers and well-wishes.
This morning (Saturday), as I sit here typing, Katie is across the room utilizing the recliner that was supposed to bring me joy and comfort after my rotator cuff surgery – it didn’t. I’m glad it’s helping her.
Hopefully and prayerfully…and please continue to pray for her…Katie will be up and going much better by tomorrow. However, I have my concerns.
Katie is as unique as they come; there’s no one like her. She is uber sweet, persistently positive, the sunshine in a dark room, and the one person for whom saying “It’s my pleasure” when serving customers at Chick-fil-A is not good enough…she says, “It’s my sincerest pleasure!”
But Katie is also the least pain-tolerant person I know, and she hates needles with a passing-out passion. Therefore, anyone who gives her pain, or allows pain to persist, is likely to be served something other than chicken.
So, in bullet-pointed fashion, here are some things I learned on the way to the hospital, before Katie’s surgery, during Katie’s surgery, and after Katie’s surgery, including the first day of recovery.
On the way to the hospital…
At the hospital…
During Surgery – the Waiting Time
First Day of Recovery
Again, thanks for your prayers and well-wishes. If nothing else, I learned a few things.
Good Friday morning, everyone! It’s a cold one here in Tennessee, let me tell you.
Anyway, I have two things I’d like to share with you if you have a second.
First, my daughter, Katie (age 22…she just had a birthday) is having gallbladder surgery today. It’s her first major surgery. I would appreciate your prayers, as I’m sure she would, too.
UPDATE: Katie is out of surgery and doing well 🙂
Second, I was glancing through some stuff this morning and came across a blog I’d never seen before. I don’t know anything about the author at this point, but if you’re a preacher or public speaker of any kind, what I read in a short time was impressive and beneficial.
It’s called BIGIDEASONLINE: Highlights From Today’s Preaching Posted Daily. The actual web address shows a different type of title, but that’s what the blog page looks like. Check it out 🙂
But, speaking of preaching, I recently preached a sermon on biblical fasting. When you have a moment, why not take a listen and then share your own thoughts. I’d appreciate it.
I don’t know if you have noticed, but I have not been writing much in the last few weeks. Maybe it’s just a season in my life, or maybe it’s just that writing takes a lot of work (if you want to do it well).
So, this morning I decided I would try to write, but I didn’t know what to write about! How could this be? Are there not enough stories in the news? Have there not been any blessings to share? Have I not heard any funny jokes?
Do I have writer’s block?
Well, if I did, I don’t anymore! Because I decided to write about having writer’s block.
The cure for writer’s block is writing about having writer’s block. Something’s bound to come from it.
It’s sort of like praise. When you don’t think you’ve got anything to praise God for, just praise Him anyway, and then all the reasons will come.
Praise God for mercy, grace, and love. Thank Him for Bethlehem, Golgotha, and the empty grave. Thank the Lord…praise Jesus…for no matter what you’re going through today, still His promises remain true, His faithfulness is everlasting, and you’re not alone!
I can thank Him for writer’s block.