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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Obama, Fox News, And The New York Times.

Way back in October then-Sen. Barack Obama granted a then-rare campaign interview. In which it went to the N.Y. Times Magazine and the candidate reportedly let the writer knew just how he felt:

“I am convinced that if there were no Fox News, I might be two or three points higher in the polls. If I were watching Fox News, I wouldn’t vote for me, right? “Because the way I’m portrayed 24/7 is as a freak! I am the latte-sipping, New York Times-reading, Volvo-driving, no-gun-owning, effete, politically correct, arrogant liberal. Who wants somebody like that?”

It’s not unusual for public figures to feel mis-portrayed or even abused by media organizations. John McCain and his people expressed some strong concerns several times about the same Times newspaper.

President-elect Obama has held four news conferences and two sit-down TV interviews since election day, including three news conferences three days in a row this week. He’s broken the news conference record for all recent presidents-elect.

At these news sessions since Nov. 4, the future commander in chief has answered a total of 22 questions from different reporters. Wednesday, it was NPR, the N.Y. Daily News and CNN.

But not once has the election victor called on a representative of Fox News or given the New York Times any play. It seems as if Obama just don't won't to acknowledge them. Personal I don't blame him for taking that stand. Fox is nothing but a racist hateful network.

Because the way I’m portrayed 24/7 is as a freak! I am the latte-sipping, New York Times-reading, Volvo-driving, no-gun-owning, effete, politically correct, arrogant liberal.

President-elect Obama do have a point and who can forget those 24 hr loop of god dam America.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Will The Mega Church Be Able To Stand During This Financial Storm?

It seem like a Number of churches and religious organizations are experiencing a downturn in their financial support in the past few weeks. Long time ago churches would have mortgage burning services to show how happy they were to end debt. I don't know if that is true today. I don't believe the church should have an on-going mortgage especially if the plan is to reach souls for Christ. We the congregation can't do what God has called us to do if we are burden down with alot of debt and neither can the church. A lot of churches have been caught up in the corporate America mentality. Secular business methods were brought into the “Church” when Churches played to the “Businessmen” in the congregation (the men with the money), elected them to boards and started using their methods for “running” the “Church”.

Most Churches today function just like secular businesses do, in the last quarter of the year they start putting together their business plan for the next year. They calculate expected expenditures for the next year, and any new expenditures, derived not through prayer and direction form God but by secular business methods and then calculate how much in tithes they need to fleece through guilt from the congregation to support their plan! Here's a compendium of articles on the subject:

Focus on the Family (Colorado Springs, Colorado) eliminates 202 jobs or 15 percent of its staff in Colorado Springs.

New Life(Colorado Springs, Colorado), the church formerly pastored by Ted Haggard, announced a layoff of 44 people, or 12 percent of its workforce.

First Baptist Church (Weston, Florida) delayed plans for a new $4 million building due to budget shortfalls.

Episocopal headquarters (New York City, New York) noted that the denominations endowment fund declined about 30 percent this year.

The following Christian colleges are closing because of poor finances: Cascade College (Portland, Oregon), Taylor University undergraduate program (Fort Wayne Indiana), Pillsbury Baptist Bible College (Owatonna, Minnesota), Vennard College (University Park, Iowa).

Seventh-Day Adventist headquarters (Silver Spring, Maryland) announced a wage freeze, budget cuts and project delays.

Various missions organizations, nationwide and global charities are also reporting downturns. It's a known fact that during economic downturns, people are more apt to focus their attention on local causes. Missions groups and global charities will be susceptible. We can expect more of this in the months to come especially with some of our mega churches. In other words the church bottom line should not be the same as a business bottom line. Money!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Give Thanks!

"He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty." ~ Psalm 91:1

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

What Is A Natural Born Citizen?

President-elect Barack Obama’s U. S. citizenship is still in question. You have various groups still investigating where Obama’s birthplace might be. Some people just can't accept a Black man being the 44 president. So they are claiming that Kenya is his birth place. From what I am understanding the Constitution has never been question on this issue of natural-born citizen. Even if his mother gave birth in Keyna and said Hawaii would it make a difference? If Hawaii has indeed verified the authenticity of birth certificate so whats the problem? I truly believe Obama would not have ran for the highest office if he didn't believe he was entitled to President as a naturalized citizen (he has NEVER claimed to be a ‘natural born citizen).

Can you lose citizenship by virtue of your mother’s remarriage to a foreigner? If so that's ridiculous! Even if he were not born in Hawaii — and there’s no credible evidence that he wasn’t — he is a natural U.S. citizen by virtue of his mother’s U.S. birth. My understanding a Hawaii newspaper in 1961 ran a birth announcement with his birth. If Hillary or john McCain could not prove Obama was not entitle to the highest office how will anyone else? Only a bizarre mind would think that a teenage mother 47 years ago would be trying to cover something up is sick.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

The Third Thursday In November.

Many households and kitchens around the country will be all a buzz in a few hours in preparation for the infamous Thanksgiving Feast. We plan for weeks to invite people to our homes that we only see a few times a year because we really don't like them for whatever reason so that we can gorge on turkey, dressing and pumpkin pies for the sake of tradition.

Why do we do this? Have we taken the time to stop to think about the origin of these holidays? I could rant and rave about how the Native Americans were ultimately treated so poorly and how Pilgrims and Angleo Saxons totally came in and stole this country and how slavery began in this country. But that's not the nature of this blog. I am writing because I think we have taken what is seemingly a good concept and have warped it into a huge, over rated production.

Why do we wait until the third Thursday in November to invite people over for a home cooked meal? Do we have to have an excuse to be thankful and have a calendar remind us to take a peaceful pause just to reflect? Shouldn't this be a staple in our daily lives? Only God in heaven no what a painful year this has been for me and my husband. I know that I'm still going through some major challenges but yet I count my blessings - no matter how small it may be on a daily basis. I'm thankful that God has blessed me with a job even if I can't meet all my financial needs and sometimes it is a burden on my heart. At this moment my husband is without a job but I have one. Alone I don't make enough to meet our financial obligation but I must continue on.

Most people that I talk to are always asking me if I am always a cheerful person and I have to say for the most part I am. I have my moments of weakness just like the next person when the challenges of life seem overwhelming. But once I've wallowed in my self pity for a while, I ask for strength just to be able to say this too shall pass. By taking the time to actually reflect and meditate, I find myself being able to be thankful for the small things like being able to wake up, dress, feed and clean myself. Then I can take it further and be thankful for my real family and my friends.

All of these things are a blessing because there are so many people out there who would love to be in my position. And when I look at my life from another perspective and not just from what's in front of me, I realize that I am truly blessed. So, I may not have all the fame, fortune, riches and success that some folks have achieved in life. I may not have the perfect body, car, home, clothes, career, education - or whatever - but I'm thankful for what I have. I'm thankful that I'm Me - imperfections and all. Everyday that I have the opportunity to see God's handiwork is a blessing and should not be discounted but appreciated. I strive to live each day to its fullest potential because it could all be over with in a blink of an eye and I hope that you will do the same.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Death The Last Enemy.

When this post appear, I will be In Alabama attending my dad's funeral. He transition from time to eternity Sunday morning. Here are some thing to consider when dealing with grieving people.

  1. I Know How You Feel Even if you have lost someone close to you, you don't know how they feel. Everyone feels differently
  2. Everything Happens For a Reason

    Even if that's what you believe and even if that's what they believe, that is not what they want to hear. This has probably already crossed their mind.
  3. You Just Need to Move On

    No. This is insensitive. When someone loses someone it takes a lot of coping and adjusting, it is impossible to “just move on.”
  4. Just Keep Busy and Move On

    As with number 3 people need to cope in their own way.
  5. Get On With Life

    The ONLY time this should EVER be said is when the person is in danger. It should be said in a gentle way and get help for the person if needed. However, for the first while life is not going to go on for the person.
  6. Things Will Get Better

    While this may be true, it doesn't seem like it to the person and will probably only frustrate the person.
  7. They Are in a Better Place Now

    Unless you are sure of the person's religious beliefs, don't say this, it may insult them.
  8. God is Taking Care of Them Now

  1. people are sensitive after suffering a loss and may take this as if they weren't good enough to take care of the person.
To My blog family in advance for the comments and love that will come my way.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The King Brand.

When is enough, enough? The family of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. are begging for a share of the proceeds from the sudden wave of T-shirts, posters and other merchandise depicting the civil rights leader alongside Barack Obama. Isaac Newton Farris Jr., King's nephew and head of the nonprofit King Center in Atlanta, said the estate is entitled to hundreds of thousands of dollars in licensing fees — maybe even millions.

Come-on will somebody get these money hungry people. We're not trying to stop anybody from legitimately supporting themselves," he said, "but we cannot allow our brand to be abused." Their "brand"? Their "brand"?! The King children continue to be an ongoing embarrassment to the legacy of a great leader as they remain in the news not for continuing MLK's fight for social justice but for lawsuits (and threats thereof) over money.

Money seems to be the only thing the King family are concerned about as they completely miss the point that the election of Barack Obama as president of the United States is the very fulfillment of MLK's dream. Now,I can understand if people wanted to make a music CD using audio of King or for that matter a video using footage of king. Now that's different. Maybe then I could understand the estate's point, here.

I can't imagine Dr. King cutting the fool at this time in history by squabbling over money. Come-on this constant bickering and unseemly money-grubbing by his family is a ongoing stain on his memory.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Churchgoing Christians Only.

Christian fraternities and sororities are gaining attention on some college campuses. Which I personal think is a good thing. Members get pumped up about prayer, Bible study and service projects, passions they say campus officials often do embrace as fresh.
A Christian fraternity on one campus has denied admission to a young man because he is Mormon. Christian fraternities or not your typically Greek fraternities. Most are straightforward about their membership requirements: Churchgoing Christians only.

The basic requirement for members is that they have faith in Jesus Christ as their savior and that they follow Biblical theology. The president said that they follow the Bible alone as scripture. No smoking or illegal drugs. No premarital sex. And, please, no drinking to the point that it would reflect badly on Christianity. Most Greek fraternities are centered on hazing, keg parties and little else. The group say that they hope to show to others what Jesus is all about. The president of the chapter says that they want to be a light on the campuses. Studies have shown that a number of kids go astray during their early years of college. In the study most of the kids were from Christian homes. The reason given for some going astray was a lack of structural.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Prince And His God.

I want to use this post to illiterate how religion plays a bigger part in our lives and how we view things. I believe Prince is a prime example of that. It's hard for me to picture Prince with these views, of all people. Prince who owes his success to a music business that for the most part is supportive of liberal values. Prince who is down on same-sex marriage and adoption by gay parents.

A recent piece in the New Yorker is about a visit to Prince's home in Beverly Park - a gated community in LA. Prince is described as "a small fifty-year-old man in yoga pants and a big sweater, wearing platform flip-flops over white socks, like a geisha." When the talk turns to social issues, Prince uses the Bible for a prop:
When asked about his perspective on social issues—gay marriage, abortion—Prince tapped his Bible and said, “God came to earth and saw people sticking it wherever and doing it with whatever, and he just cleared it all out. He was, like, ‘Enough.’ ”
Great musician that he is an at the age of 50 he is on the straight and narrow and it shows. I believe a lot of that has to do with his religion of choice. Prince is a Jehovah's Witness ... has been for seven years. He's been known to slip out of his gated community to go around the neighborhood proselytizing door-to-door. His religious make-over has included cleaning up the dirty bits in his song lyrics. It has even included going celibate.

The Jehovah's Witnesses are Prince choice to follow. But, according to Beliefnet.com, an independent website that covers the world's religions, the Witnesses believe that abortion is wrong, homosexuality a "serious sin" and gender roles defined i.e. men are the head of the household and women loving caretakers who assist the husband in teaching the children. They are opposed to blood transfusions. Again, I am only saying what and who we believe in plays a larger role in our thinking and determination of things of matter than some people think.

Also, maybe some one need to inform Prince that The Jehovah Witnesses are not Christian. He stated once when ask about his faith in which he call Jehovah Witnesses a Christian denomination. Prince there is a huge gap between the Christian view of Jesus and other religions. A lot of religion sees Jesus as just a man, if he existed at all, we Christians call him God. Jews say that Jesus was not the Messiah, we Christians say he was. Muslims say that Jesus didn't die on the cross but we Christians say He did. Hindus claim that God has and is incarnate multiple times over,we Christians believe that God has only been incarnate in Jesus. Buddhists believe that the world will be perfected when we do what is right.We Christians know that apart from God, no one can do what is right. Peter says in Acts 4:12, that, “there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved,” and as Paul says in 1 Timothy 2:5, “there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Marriage Is........

I don't believe same sex marriage issues are the same as civil rights issues to which it is so often compared. Some gay rights activists love to compare their struggle to the struggle for interracial marriage, but it is not the same thing. There is no fundamental difference between a black man and a white man. There are great fundamental differences between men and women.

Defining the basic social unit in our culture as marriage between a man and a woman I believe it's better for our society. I am looking at it from a God point of view. I don't like the idea of taking away anyone's rights. I believe we all have the rights to go to hell if we want to. God call that right Free Will. I am not saying if two people of the same sex marry they are going to hell. No! but if they chose to go they should have the same right to hell as people of the opposite sex does.

Marriage between anyone and everyone was never an inalienable right (you may not marry your sister, your father, or your dog... or someone under the age of 16 for that matter). No value system in history, whether Christian or otherwise, has prohibited interracial marriage; but every value system has discouraged same-sex marriage. Even societies that encouraged and celebrated homosexuality, reserved marriage for male-female relationships.

Gays and lesbians have the right to live with and love whomever they choose. They are even free to marry, if they want to marry someone of the opposite sex. If they want to live with someone of the same sex, they have -----. When I here the word marriage I think about man an woman. So to me that's marriage. Maybe the people of same sex marriage should think about adopting a new word for there union that has not been established by society.

The problem seems to be more about the word marriage than anything else. Under that word I believe same sex couple should have all the rights that the majority has. Me Ann Brock being part of the majority does not have the right to "force" my values on the minority; but neither does the minority have the right to force its values on me.

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Fairness Doctrine.

About 20 years ago, Rush Limbaugh launched his nationwide radio broadcast. The airwaves had been recently liberated in 1987 from the Fairness Doctrine by then-President Ronald Reagan.

For roughly forty years, the Fairness Doctrine had prohibited radio stations from airing a monolithic viewpoint on any given issue. Congress in 1959 amended the Communications Act of 1934 to include the Fairness Doctrine: "A broadcast licensee shall afford reasonable opportunity for discussion of conflicting views on matters of public importance.” Ten years later, the Supreme Court upheld its constitutionality, but, as mentioned, the doctrine fell by the wayside.

Rush Limbaugh opened the door for many radio talk show hosts, many of the conservative ilk: Sean Hannity, Gordon Liddy, Michael Reagan, Michael Savage, and others. The radio airwaves - no longer the primary medium in America - were given over to opinionated and often controversial talk shows which I call hate speech.

Liberal talk radio has not been as popular. Studies vary, but anywhere from 76 to 91 percent of talk radio remains conservative. Such an imbalance needs to be addressed. One report shows the following:

  • Broadcast TV news, millions/day Liberal 42.1 Conservative 0
  • Top 25 newspapers, millions/day Liberal 11.7 Conservative 1.3
  • Cable TV news, millions/month Liberal 182.8 Conservative 61.6
  • Top talk radio, millions/week Liberal 24.5 Conservative 87.0
  • Newsweeklies, millions/week Liberal 8.5 Conservative 0

Nancy Pelosi (Dem-Ca), House Speaker, has indicated her support in seeing the Fairness Doctrine restored. Steny Hoyer (Dem-Md), House Majority Leader, and Senator Jeff Bingaman (Dem-NM) have also expressed support for the return of the Fairness Doctrine.

Some months back, the Obama campaign stated it was not interested in seeing this doctrine restored. I'm not a fan of Rush or any other talk show host for that matter. But, I think something needs to be done about the hate that is filling the air waves. "I do not agree with what that have to say, but I beleive they have the right to say it." Question Should The Fairness Doctrine Be Restored?

Saturday, November 8, 2008

12 Things That I've Learned!

  1. "I've learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow.
  2. "I've learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.
  3. "I've learned that regardless of your relationship with your parents, you'll miss them when they're gone from your life.
  4. "I've learned that making a "living" is not the same thing as "making a life.
  5. "I've learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance.
  6. "I've learned that you shouldn't go through life with a catcher's mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw some things back.
  7. "I've learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision.
  8. "I've learned that even when I have pains, I don't have to be one.
  9. "I've learned that every day you should reach out and touch someone. People love a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back.
  10. "I've learned that I still have a lot to learn.
  11. "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."
  12. "I've learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow.

Monday, November 3, 2008

From A Slave To A President!

Amanda Jones, 109, the daughter of a man born into slavery, has lived a life long enough to touch three centuries. And after voting consistently as a Democrat for 70 years, she has voted early for the country's first black presidential nominee.

[...] Amanda Jones, a delicate, thin woman wearing golden-rimmed glasses, giggled as the family discussed this year's presidential election. She is too weak to go the polls, so two of her 10 children — Eloise Baker, 75, and Joyce Jones — helped her fill out a mail-in ballot for Barack Obama, Baker said. "I feel good about voting for him," Amanda Jones said.

Jones' father herded sheep as a slave until he was 12, according to the family, and once he was freed, he was a farmer who raised cows, hogs and turkeys on land he owned. Her mother was born right after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed, Joyce Jones said. The family owned more than 100 acres of land in Cedar Creek at one point, she said.

Amanda Jones' father urged her to exercise her right to vote, despite discriminatory practices at the polls and poll taxes meant to keep black and poor people from voting. Those practices were outlawed for federal elections with the 24th Amendment in 1964, but not for state and local races in Texas until 1966.

Amanda Jones says she cast her first presidential vote for Franklin Roosevelt, but she doesn't recall which of his four terms that was. When she did vote, she paid a poll tax, her daughters said. That she is able, for the first time, to vote for a black presidential nominee for free fills her with joy, Jones said. Congratulation OBAMA!

Jesus Is Not A Republican.

Why do some people think that all Christians are Republicans? At lest that's the impression I am getting. Who ever said that "Republican" must equal "Christian." Many believe Christians have a specific political agenda, more specifically, a conservative Republican agenda. When the term "religious right" is used, everyone knows it's really Republicans that are being referenced. Even "evangelical" is used to connote "conservative Republican." People associate evangelicals with people like Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson and the Christian Coalition." How did the word evangelical--from the root "evangelize" meaning "good news," and referring to Jesus' Great Commission to share his teachings and promises with the world--become political terminology?

There are plenty of Christians who feel one must have certain political leanings in order to be a good Christian. One must be a Republican. One must be a conservative (whatever that means). One must be pro-life without reservation. One must oppose gay rights completely. Sometimes these views come direct from the pulpit. What would Jesus do if He was walking among us today? He'd surely address poverty, calling for more social programs and international aid to feed the children worldwide that die from hunger each year. He'd reach out to prostitutes and drug addicts, and embrace people most of us are afraid to touch or even acknowledge. He'd give comfort to AIDS patients and to women who've had abortions. He would speak out against hate crimes. He'd support the preservation of his Father's creation (AKA the environment).

Some argue Jesus would be a liberal today, deeply concerned about righting social wrongs. Personally, I doubt Jesus would register with any political party. During his time on earth, his primary "agenda" wasn't feeding or healing--it was forgiveness. Above all else, he wanted everyone to know they could have a relationship with God. His last words to his disciples were to spread this news. Our primary objective then, as Christians, is to share that love and forgiveness with everyone: welfare moms and A-list celebrities. Skid Row residents and billionaire tycoons. I bet Jesus today would approach each of us individually and ask us to give our best resources to help the homeless, the hungry, the sick, and the hurting. In fact, that's exactly what he instructs in Matthew 25:37-40:

Sunday, November 2, 2008

If The Church Offers You 25$, Would You Then Go To Church?

What do you think about offering first-time visitors to your church $25 to attend the Sunday morning service? I was reading where a church gave money to the first 75 adults aged 16 or older at each of their two services with the only stipulation being that the cash recipients stay the duration of the 90-minute service. Another church in Iowa has drawn visitors by giving away tickets to performances, movie passes, and $10 gas cards.

Do we perceive something as more valuable if there's a dollar figure attached to it? In the case of the churches above, visitors were getting something for going to church. Salvation is free! Some folks can't quite process the free gift of salvation. Why do you think people don't go to church? I believe what ever you offer a person beside Christ and He alone you will have to offer all the time. What do you think? Do the church need to offer grimaces to get people into the church?