Category Archives: America

Cold As Hell

Welcome Winter

If you live in other parts of the country or the world, you may not understand the mind of a Southerner. On the other hand, there’s probably no “may” to it.

Sweet tea in Mason jars. It’s a Southern thing.

You don’t understand why we like sweet tea, grits, cornbread, fried okra (if it’s done correctly), banjos, guns, God, and an occasional jab at the North (those *@!% Yankees). But that’s OK, we love you, anyway, as our typical hospitality demonstrates.

But when it comes to winter… You guys up north REALLY don’t get us. Seriously. Anytime we get excited about snow, you talk about how much you can’t stand it. You even make fun of how we shut down our lives when no more than a quarter of an inch falls on the streets.

You really, really don’t understand.

So, when yesterday morning was the coldest day of the year so far, and when this morning’s temps were all the way down in the high 20’s here in Chattanooga, you folk not from here don’t understand how a guy like me could be giddy over being able to break out a fleece-lined flannel shirt in order to go outside and see my breath as I walked over crunchy, frost-covered fallen leaves.

You see, it’s like this: When you’re accustomed to frying in high heat and swimming in humidity, actually experiencing cold weather in winter is refreshing. And, yes, we are dreaming (and hoping, praying, etc.) for a white Christmas.

Any Cold Is Bad

However, there are some Southerners who hate any kind of cold. Many of them are the poor and elderly who don’t have the ability to fight off the low temperatures. They suffer during this time.

But then there are others who moved to the South to escape the cold winters of the north; they feel betrayed when it gets cold down here.

Finally, there are those who can’t be happy no matter what. They want to complain about anything and everything, hot or cold. As a matter of fact, more often than not it’s that type of people you will hear repeat a familiar descriptor about the weather:

“It’s cold as hell outside!” 

Describing Hell

“Hell” is a word that is used in describing a whole host of things (or, a whole heck of a lot of things… see what I did there?). Things are big as, hot as, loud as, messed up as, weird as, and sorry as hell. But on what do they base their adjectives? How much do they really know about Hell in order to draw a similarity that makes any sense?

I mean, if I was to say, “That ant is as tiny as Mt. Everest,” would that even compute? No, because Mt. Everest isn’t tiny.

Then why say something is as cold as hell? I mean, we know from the Bible that Hell is hot, but how hot exactly is up for debate; therefor describing something as “hot as hell” is within the realm of possibility, at least.

But “cold as“? Really?

On the other hand, Hell is described as a place where the residents will, despite the wailing masses crying out for a single drop of water, be completely and utterly alone. They will reside in a place without love, without compassion, without the gentle touch of a caring hand, without a single, solitary voice ever saying, not even once in a billion years, “It will be OK.”

Does that make you shiver thinking about it? It does me.

Maybe Hell is “cold” after all. 

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Filed under America, General Observations, places, Weather

Not Just for Americans

As I sit in bed with a laptop on my… lap…duh… I can’t help but wonder if anyone will have the time to read this post. I mean, really, it’s Thanksgiving!

Oh, I just said I’m lying in bed, but don’t think for a moment it’s because I’m being lazy; I was up with my wife, daughters, and sister till 2 a.m. getting ready for today’s Thanksgiving meal.

People talk about how many calories we consume on Thanksgiving, but when you think of how many calories are burned during the preparation, I think it all evens out.

But the whole reason I’m taking a moment to write is because Thanksgiving shouldn’t be an exclusively American holiday. Sure, the historical basis for the actual Thanksgiving holiday is unique and should be celebrated, but the call to be thankful should be heralded across every land.

Without question, Americans will consume more food today than much of the world will see all year. Unfortunately, the whole idea behind having a feast to celebrate God’s blessings will be lost on most. As I have heard just this morning, the main thing people have been stating as the meaning of Thanksgiving is “to gather with family” and be “thankful for friends.”

However, if nothing else, what we should be being thankful for are blessing that span every continent and people group. Both the poor and the rich, the slave and the free, the sick and the well, the forgotten and the famous have plenty to celebrate.

We are loved by God. So much so that He made a Way for us to be reconciled to Him through Jesus Christ.

We are the recipients God’s mercy. How often has the Righteous One withheld His hand of judgment? Do you ever stop to think how close to hell each of us really could be if not for the mercy of God?

Grace! Amazing grace! It doesn’t matter where you are from, America or Zimbabwe, even Paradise, California, God’s grace is there and in superabundance. Where mercy is not getting what we deserve, grace is God’s unmerited favor shown toward those who can offer Him nothing.

The ones sitting around a table eating turkey are not different than the child in Haiti eating mud cookies: without God’s grace we would be eternally lost. This world is not all there is, and what is waiting on the other side will far outweigh the sufferings and sorrows endured during this life – and the only reason we have hope is because of God’s grace.

Yes, I’m thankful for the fact that today I can sit at a table with my wife, all three of our daughters, my sister who’s here visiting from Germany, my son-in-law, and a friend or two. I’m thankful for the fact that we are fortunate enough to be able to enjoy a large meal, including turkey and dressing. But even if all we were having was a cold bowl of cereal and decaffeinated coffee, God has been good.

Thank you, Lord, for all you have provided, but thank you most of all for your grace. May you be praised.

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Filed under America, Thanksgiving

Guaranteed With Blood

Let it never be forgotten that although our freedoms – our true freedoms – are given by God, those who would suppress them are always on the offense and must be defended against.

Therefore, every freedom that we as Americans enjoy are freedoms which have been preserved, at one time or another, with blood. From the first drops shed by those brave souls in our fight for independence, to Maj. Brent R. Taylor, a reservist in the Army National Guard and the mayor of North Ogden, Utah who died on November 3 in Afghanistan, blood will always be the price.

Blood is the price of freedom. The truth is the same for Christians. Our freedoms as Americans have been secured by the blood of its patriots, while the freedom of the Believer has been bought by the blood of Jesus Christ.

That being said, the rights affirmed in the First Amendment of the United States Constitution – particularly that of the freedom of religion and the free exercise thereof – is one that is being taken advantage of less and less. A growing number of those who say they believe in God rarely take advantage of the freedom to assemble for worship without fear of government retribution.

In other words, on Veteran’s Day, a day when we remember and honor those who have fought for our country and for our freedom, one of the most important freedoms for which they fought will be treated like last week’s trash and thrown to the curb. And to think, it was bought with blood!

But even more, what about the blood of Jesus Christ? Our freedom from the bondage of sin and death was bought with His blood – blood that should have been ours – yet, how many of those who’ve been set free will gather together to celebrate the One who freed them?

Your freedoms have been guaranteed with blood, so why not treat them with the respect they are due? Exercise your right.

Photo taken today in front of the Catoosa County Courthouse in Ringgold, Georgia.

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Filed under America, worship

Seven+ Predictions for the Next Two Years (10/18-10/20)

Now that the Democrats have won back control of the House of Representatives, I will go ahead and make a few predictions about what will happen over the next two years.

If you are a Democrat, I’m pretty sure this list will look very similar to the “to do list” already held in place on your refrigerator door with “Keep Abortion Legal!” and Che Guevara magnets.

1) Democrats will demand investigations on everything Donald Trump has done or ever will do.

2) Democrats will obstruct anything the Republicans try to do or try not to do.

3) Democrats will make up stuff in order to keep investigations going.

4) The country will continue to be divided and become even more polarized based on the continual anti-Trump messaging fueled by Democrat accusations and pushed by the media. There will be no “working together” on anything.

5) Democrats will accuse Republicans of partisan obstructionism and complain constantly of hateful rhetoric.

6) The next election cycle will

  • See even more left-wing celebrities like Katy Perry and Madonna going nude to draw out the youth vote,  but the last 27 Reagan Democrats will call in their last favors and keep Hillary Clinton clothed;
  • The race card will be used more often than Visa and Master Card combined;
  • Civility will be thrown out the window like a piece of chewed gum;
  • Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will record a remix of the Beatles’ “All You Need Is Love” and sing, “All You Need Is Socialism”;
  • More celebrities who unfortunately lied to us the first time will once again promise to leave the country if Trump gets re-elected;
  • Maxine Waters and Nancy Pelosi will finally remove their outer shells and reveal that they are actually alien lizard people intent on the destruction of humanity, but MSNBC and Rolling Stone will blame Trump for Pelosi and Waters’ inability to “come out” before then. Trump’s “Space Force” initiative will then be condemned as xenophobic and blamed for inciting intergalactic incivility.  The new #MeTooLizard movement will justify the aliens’ apocalyptic plans as a natural response to Trump’s attempts to “drain the swamp.” The Geico Gecko will then identify as a lizard, get fang implants, and be invited to a week of guest spots on Jimmy Kimmel.

7) We will be 2 years closer to the destruction of a once-great nation.

Think I’m wrong?

Share if you agree.

 

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Filed under Aliens, America, current events, Humor, politics

I’m a “5-Issue” Voter

Today is election day in America.

Today is the day we Americans – the ones who care – take advantage of a blood-bought privilege to determine who will represent us in the governance of our nation, from local races all the way to Washington, D.C.

Now, it’s only a “mid-term” election, but it’s still very, very important. That is why I will head to the polls with as much gravitas as I would should this be an election to determine the President of the United States.

Some people will vote solely along political party lines. Others will vote based on “who’s best for the job.” They are the ones who claim to put person over party,”principle over politics.”

But let’s be honest, folks: this election (as was the last one) is far more complicated than simple either/or choices. No one is perfect, so it’s not always easy to say there’s one candidate that’s clearly better than another. And, to be fair, depending on where you live and who’s in charge, party affiliation isn’t always a black-and-white issue.

However, there are some issues that help guide how I will vote in each election. Some folk like to think of themselves as “single-issue voters.” I, on the other hand, am more like a “5-issue voter.” Therefore, I thought I would share them with you this morning, just in case you are looking for any last-minute advice.

5 Deciding Issues

1 The First Amendment. Without a doubt, the Constitution is always under attack. One reason is because so many are woefully ignorant of what’s in the Constitution – most have never even read it! But when it comes to whom I vote for, I will NOT vote for someone who threatens to dismantle my right to free speech and my right to worship. To be specific, I will oppose a candidate who wants to enact legislation meant to silence the pulpit, chill open discussion of ideas, or restrict Christians from participation in the public square.

2. Right to Life/Life of the Unborn. Let me be very clear, I will not vote for any man or woman who condones abortion on demand. Granted, the choice might get complicated if both candidates believe the same on this issue, but differently on others, but as a general rule, if there is any other choice, I will not vote for a person – or a Party – that supports and condones the willful and unnecessary destruction of innocent human life in the womb.

3. The Second Amendment. This is America, not Europe or Australia. I will not vote for someone who wants to take away my right to bear arms. George Washington said: “Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people’s liberty teeth and keystone under independence.” For a more amplified defense of this position, I would refer you to an essay by Walter E. Williams of George Mason University (the source of the above Washington quote) entitled “Constitutional ignorance.

4. Originalist Judges. It is tragic that so much power is now placed in the courts. Yet, knowing the way things have been going as of late, it’s probably not going to change any time soon. Therefore, it is more important than ever for an informed voter to cast his vote for a candidate who will support the selection and nomination of judges who will not seek to write law but enforce it. It is also important that the candidate support the selection and nomination of judges who do not try to imagine what the Founders were thinking, but what they wrote. It is not the responsibility of the judge to change law based on his or her opinion of it; it’s the job of the branch that writes the law in the first place – Congress.

5. Freedom. Believe it or not, most people are clueless as to what a genuine “right” is. That is why we have seen laws like the Affordable Care Act passed. Because many claimed healthcare to be a natural human right, Americans were forced to give up actual rights in order to keep from being fined. Any “right” that imposes a “duty” on another is not a true human right because it cannot be enjoyed simultaneously by both individuals. For a great explanation of what is a legitimate human “right,” I would encourage you to read the following piece by Professor Charles W. Baird: “#10 – ‘I Have a Right!'”

So there you have it. These are the issues that help guide how I will vote in each election. I hope they help.

Now, go vote!

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Filed under Abortion, America, community, current events, politics, voting

A Little Less Ignorance, Please

This week I have been “away from my desk” doing other things…things on which I will report as early as next week.

But even though I have not been doing much writing, I have had a phone nearby, and Facebook has been a constant source of stress.

You know, all it takes is one comment on one thread to stir up a hornets’ nest of anger and hate. Even if your comment is meant to be objective, somebody is going to interpret it as an attack. Too many people are WAY too defensive and full of anger.

Unfortunately, part of the problem is that there are a lot of people out there throwing words around without knowing their actual meanings. And if you DARE make an attempt to draw out an actual definition, the one being questioned will launch into a vulgar, condescending, grammatically-incorrect, ALL-CAP rant accusing you of everything from racism to being born out of wedlock (followed by demands that you go perform a sexual act upon yourself which is physically impossible).

For example, according to some, Donald J. Trump is supposed to be a Nazi. However, if Trump was really a “Nazi,” would he have befriended Israel and moved the American embassy to Jerusalem? Would he have allowed his daughter to marry a Jew and convert to Judaism? Don’t think so. Those are the kind of things the National Socialist German Workers Party would have disapproved.

In the same vein, there are a lot of people who throw around the label Christian when describing nice people, non-Muslims, the American alt-Right, or nominal church attendees. Do they really know what “Christian” means? Do they have any concept of what wearing that name tag demands? Not likely, especially if they believe Jesus was a radical socialist and an “anti-establishment, hippie freak with strange ideas” who never judged anyone.

If you want to be honest, the majority of Americans can’t even define what it means to be a “conservative” or “liberal,” a Democrat or Republican, much less a Nazi, Socialist, or Fascist!

We hear adjectives like “unbiblical” and “unconstitutional,” yet more often than not the users of these words never read the Bible nor the Constitution, just a few out-of-context memes.

Therefore, why not call a truce until we are better able to define what it is that we actually believe, and why? How about let’s read more source material and less social media propaganda? Maybe then we could get past the name-calling and attacks and move forward to more informed, civil and intelligent conversation.

Or, <<<U can AKT LYK a IGNERANT SHEOPLE>> on the facebook>>> W/NUTN  BUT H8t!!>><< HOW BOW DAH??!!

Your choice. Choose wisely.

“If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.” – James 1:5 NLT

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Filed under America, current events, General Observations, politics

Away from the Desk

I would love to be writing more, but I’m too busy, spread a little too thin.

But don’t worry, I’m gathering thoughts along the way. It won’t be long before I’ll have a few things to share…

a few items to discuss…

a few observations to unpack…

Hint words: hotels, packing, hospitals, local food, ear plugs, strangers, Air Force One, Jesus, the ark, creation, family, rock ‘n roll…etc

Looking forward to it 🙂

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Filed under America, blogging