I have been offline for awhile but this is as close to a must read as I have seen for awhile ("Professor Charlie Kaufmann")
Do our children believe there is a moral absolute?
By Justin P. McBrayer
I have been offline for awhile but this is as close to a must read as I have seen for awhile ("Professor Charlie Kaufmann")
Do our children believe there is a moral absolute?
By Justin P. McBrayer
I have a friend named Tom. Not sure what he reads or where he finds some of things he sends me…..but I truly appreciate the time he takes to send me a note. Here is one that you can print and share.
The best sermons are lived….not preached.
Real life stories that teach you many things in life. These are based on true incidents – both wonderful and inspirational.
1. Today, I interviewed my grandmother for part of a research paper I'm working on for my Psychology class. When I asked her to define success in her own words, she said, "Success is when you look back at your life and the memories make you smile."
2. Today, I asked my mentor - a very successful business man in his 70s- what his top 3 tips are for success. He smiled and said, "Read something no one else is reading, think something no one else is thinking, and do something no one else is doing."
3. Today, after a 72 hour shift at the fire station, a woman ran up to me at the grocery store and gave me a hug. When I tensed up, she realized I didn't recognize her. She let go with tears of joy in her eyes and the most sincere smile and said, "On 9-11-2001, you carried me out of the World Trade Center."
4. Today, after I watched my dog get run over by a car, I sat on the side of the road holding him and crying. And just before he died, he licked the tears off my face.
5. Today at 7AM, I woke up feeling ill, but decided I needed the money, so I went into work. At 3PM I got laid off. On my drive home I got a flat tire. When I went into the trunk for the spare, it was flat too. A man in a BMW pulled over, gave me a ride, we chatted, and then he offered me a job. I start tomorrow.
6. Today, as my father, three brothers, and two sisters stood around my mother's hospital bed, my mother uttered her last coherent words before she died. She simply said, "I feel so loved right now. We should have gotten together like this more often."
7. Today, I kissed my dad on the forehead as he passed away in a small hospital bed. About 5 seconds after he passed, I realized it was the first time I had given him a kiss since I was a little boy.
8. Today, in the cutest voice, my 8-year-old daughter asked me to start recycling. I chuckled and asked, "Why?" She replied, "So you can help me save the planet." I chuckled again and asked, "And why do you want to save the planet?" Because that's where I keep all my stuff," she said.
9. Today, when I witnessed a 27-year-old breast cancer patient laughing hysterically at her 2-year-old daughter's antics, I suddenly realized that I need to stop complaining about my life and start celebrating it again.
10. Today, a boy in a wheelchair saw me desperately struggling on crutches with my broken leg and offered to carry my backpack and books for me. He helped me all the way across campus to my class and as he was leaving he said, "I hope you feel better soon."
11. Today, I was feeling down because the results of a biopsy came back malignant. When I got home, I opened an e-mail that said, "Thinking of you today. If you need me, I'm a phone call away." It was from a high school friend I hadn't seen in 10 years.
12. Today, I was traveling with a friend in Kenya and we met a refugee from Zimbabwe. He said he hadn't eaten anything in over 3 days and looked extremely skinny and unhealthy. Then my friend offered him the rest of the sandwich he was eating. The first thing the man said was, "We can share it.
It's been a couple weeks and I hope all had a great time over the holiday:-)
I attached an article from Biola University's Magazine. The point is right in line with my thinking....and I couldn't say it any better. enjoy
The Freedom to be a Christian College
I understand everyone's desire to be unique and tolerate everyone who is different. But why isn't that a two way street? It doesn't seem right to make civil law that forces many of us to accept laws that counter God's laws. Love doesn't require a law to live it. Christians have always struggled with this truth as well--I am afraid our society is so afraid to love each other that we take the easy way out----we legislate it
New Executive Orders on LGBT Discrimination Don't Exempt Religious Orgs
(UPDATED) But Obama won't withdraw memo on religious discrimination.
Ruth Moon/ July 21, 2014
New Executive Orders on LGBT Discrimination Don't Exempt Religious OrUPDATED) But Obama won't withdraw memo on religious discrimination.
Ruth Moon/ July 21, 2014
An executive order President Obama signed Monday prohibiting sexual orientation discrimination in federal hiring may not immediately affect many religious organizations, but leaders are still raising their eyebrows.
The executive order amends a 1965 order prohibiting some forms of discrimination by federal contractors. The old text forbade contractors from discriminating "against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin." Obama's revision adds "sexual orientation" and "gender identity" between "sex" and "national origin."
Many religious organizations, such as World Vision, World Relief, and Catholic Charities partner with the federal government, but often receive grants, not contracts, so are not affected by the order, said Stanley Carlson-Thies, director of the Institutional Religious Freedom Alliance.
Religious organizations with federal grants are currently protected: A 2007 religious exemption memo from the federal attorney general's office says the Religious Freedom Restoration Act "is reasonably construed" to exempt World Vision (and other religious organizations that administer federal funds through social services programs) from religious nondiscrimination requirements on other federal grantees.
The executive order also lets stand a George W. Bush-era provision allowing religious contractors to hire employees "of a particular religion," said Thomas Berg, a professor of law and public policy at the University of St. Thomas (Minn.).
"Several federal courts have held that this language, incorporated from elsewhere in antidiscrimination law, allows religious organizations to have standards concerning employees' conduct if those moral standards stem from the organization's religious beliefs," Berg said.
These past orders add up to a patchwork of protection for religious organizations, said Douglas Laycock, a professor of law and religious studies at the University of Virginia.
"And very important, [the] executive order creates no right for anyone to sue anyone else. So gay rights groups cannot organize litigation against religious contactors," he said. "Only the contracting agencies can enforce this order, and they may quietly enforce it with attention to religious liberty—which is what this administration has mostly done so far."
However, that may not always be the case, said Jenny Yang, vice president of advocacy and policy for World Relief, a federal grantee.
"Our main concern is its implication on religious freedom down the line, where future executive orders could also include not just federal contractors but grantees as well," she said. "It's a slippery slope and we feel the need to speak up whenever we feel like religious freedom is threatened."
In addition, federal funds for overseas relief and development are increasingly allocated by contracts, and prison services are also funded through contracts, so any order regulating contracts is likely to affect more religious organizations in the future, Carlson-Thies said.
The U.S. government uses contracts to fulfill specific, well-defined requests, such as building ships and other items for the military, and often regulates them with executive orders, Carlson-Thies said.
"Grants are more what we think of as philanthropy," he said. "'We need somebody that's going to serve inner city kids in such and such a neighborhood' — you come to us with your best proposal; we'll select the best, give you money, and get reports on how it's going."
Past and Future
The order accomplishes part of what legislators attempted with the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), a bill that passed the Senate earlier this session and now languishes in the House. In its current form, that ENDA would prohibit most employers in the country from sexual orientation-based discrimination but would exempt religious organizations and the military.
Nearly every Congress for the past decade has dealt with a similar bill in some fashion, according to Human Rights Campaign, but so far none has passed into law. In 1998, President Bill Clinton signed a related and limited executive order prohibiting sexual orientation-based discrimination in some competitive services of the federal civilian workforce.
Several groups supportive of same-sex marriage, including the ACLU, released a letter July 8 withdrawing their support of the legislative ENDA in its current form, saying that the exceptions were "no longer tenable" and such a bill would lead to "further negative effects."
Central Christian College (CCC)
Surviving the Changing Education Landscape for Small Private Universities
Premise: Public education is failing and under attack. For CCC, Christian education is under attack. No matter what you read today, the summary isn’t positive:
1. America is no longer even in the top 20 countries in terms of providing basic education.
2. Price has continued to go up while quality (as evidenced above) is declining.
3. Government intrusion and massive regulation has led to spiraling administrative costs for the universities.
4. Government intrusion is also forcing the Christian schools to accept unacceptable compromise in pursuit of their mission.
5. Student debt is unacceptable.
Conclusion: Those universities that continue to follow the current education system are at risk of surviving. The current trend points to oligopolies and regional monopolies, and all the schools without endowment being forced to close. At some point in the near future, the government will no longer allow distinctly Christian schools to operate using government grants. This will speed the demise and guarantee the merging into large, nationally run institutions.
Central Christian College has adopted a different pathway to survive the current demise of education in America. Five years ago, we seriously reflected on what worked in America 100 years ago and have adopted a strategic plan to take us forward.
1. 100 years ago, America was focused on Christian values and work ethic. CCC is committed to offering a Christ-centered education for character. Students will leave CCC with fit hearts, minds, bodies, and souls.
2. Work ethic and cost—in the past, students worked their way through college instead of borrowing. CCC is committed to offering our education at a price that students can afford without borrowing. CCC will offer work for our students to pay for their education.
3. Our faculty and staff have recommitted themselves to excellence. We see this as an opportunity to give back to our community—doing the basics of higher education the best we can in an effort to please the Lord and mentor the next generation.
4. Create a different structure to take advantage of our strengths and reduce our weaknesses. Primarily, we will:
a. Eliminate debt
b. Create other revenue streams to enhance endowment
c. Create a new organization structure to support and protect the CCC Board of Trustees
d. Seek out social investors committed to our mission—and invest in infrastructure, expand/improve our education, and brand and market our school.
Taking these steps put CCC back on the path to be excellent.
Taking these steps ensures CCC will be able to stay on mission with Christ-centered education for character and will make us unique—a university that offers an excellent education at an affordable price and students will be able to work their way through school.
From a friend of mine
Election Day 2014 - Tuesday, November 4, 2014
Please vote today. Exercise your right as a citizen to select your leaders. 56 men and their families paid the price to afford you this privilege. Do not squander their sacrifice.
56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence. This is the price they paid:
Five signers were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died. Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned. Two lost their sons in the revolutionary army, another had two sons captured. Nine of the fifty-six fought and died from wounds or hardships resulting from the Revolutionary War.
These men signed, and they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor!
What kind of men were they? Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists. Eleven were merchants. Nine were farmers and large plantation owners. All were men of means, well educated. But they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing full well that the penalty could be death if they were captured.
Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships swept from the seas by the British navy. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.
Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly. He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding. His possessions were taken from him, and poverty was his reward.
Vandals or soldiers or both, looted the properties of Ellery, Clymer, Hall, Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton.
Perhaps one of the most inspiring examples of "undaunted resolution" was at the Battle of Yorktown. Thomas Nelson, Jr. was returning from Philadelphia to become Governor of Virginia and joined General Washington just outside of Yorktown. He then noted that British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters, but that the patriot's were directing their artillery fire all over the town except for the vicinity of his own beautiful home. Nelson asked why they were not firing in that direction, and the soldiers replied, "Out of respect to you, Sir." Nelson quietly urged General Washington to open fire, and stepping forward to the nearest cannon, aimed at his own house and fired. The other guns joined in, and the Nelson home was destroyed. Nelson died bankrupt.
Francis Lewis's Long Island home was looted and gutted, his home and properties destroyed. His wife was thrown into a damp dark prison cell without a bed. Health ruined, Mrs. Lewis soon died from the effects of the confinement. The Lewis's son would later die in British captivity, also.
"Honest John" Hart was driven from his wife's bedside as she lay dying, when British and Hessian troops invaded New Jersey just months after he signed the Declaration. Their thirteen children fled for their lives. His fields and his grist mill were laid to waste. All winter, and for more than a year, Hart lived in forests and caves, finally returning home to find his wife dead, his children vanished and his farm destroyed. Rebuilding proved too be too great a task. A few weeks later, by the spring of 1779, John Hart was dead from exhaustion and a broken heart.
Norris and Livingston suffered similar fates.
New Jersey's Richard Stockton, after rescuing his wife and children from advancing British troops, was betrayed by a loyalist, imprisoned, beaten and nearly starved. He returned an invalid to find his home gutted, and his library and papers burned. He, too, never recovered, dying in 1781 a broken man.
William Ellery of Rhode Island, who marveled that he had seen only "undaunted resolution" in the faces of his co-signers, also had his home burned.
Only days after Lewis Morris of New York signed the Declaration, British troops ravaged his 2,000-acre estate, butchered his cattle and drove his family off the land. Three of Morris' sons fought the British.
When the British seized the New York houses of the wealthy Philip Livingston, he sold off everything else, and gave the money to the Revolution. He died in 1778.
Arthur Middleton, Edward Rutledge and Thomas Heyward Jr. went home to South Carolin tight. In the British invasion of the South, Heyward was wounded and all three were captured. As he rotted on a prison ship in St. Augustine, Heyward's plantation was raided, buildings burned, and his wife, who witnessed it all, died. Other Southern signers suffered the same general fate.
Among the first to sign had been John Hancock, who wrote in big, bold script so George III "could read my name without spectacles and could now double his reward for 500 pounds for my head." If the cause of the revolution commands it, roared Hancock, "Burn Boston and make John Hancock a beggar!"
Here were men who believed in a cause far beyond themselves.
Such were the stories and sacrifices of the America revolution. These were not wild eyed, rabble-rousing ruffians. They were soft-spoken men of means and education. They had security, but they valued liberty more. Standing tall, straight, and unwavering, they pledged: "For the support of this Declaration, with firm reliance on the protection of the Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other, our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor."
"I am concerned for the security of our great Nation; not so much because of any threat from without, but because of the insidious forces working from within." -- General Douglas MacArthur
Winning is a Process—Faith is Required
Hebrews 12:1b-2a says, “And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.”
Winning is a process. Think about it for a second. What happens the day after the game? Win or lose there is always the next day. J In 2003, I was assisting a high school basketball team in Colorado. We were undefeated heading into the state tournament, ranked #1, facing huge expectations. The amazing thing about the tournament was the fact that we won! We held up the trophy, hugged, high fived, had dinner together in celebration…then we all went home and went to bed. The next morning, when all the emotion wore off, I thought to myself, “Is this it?” Wow, I need to mow the lawn, clean the house, and get ready for work. I prayed about it and Hebrews came to mind. I understood the basic “run with perseverance” part, but realized I was ignoring Jesus, the author and finisher of my faith!
I also contemplated how the team we beat in the championship was feeling that morning. The team we played was also a Christian school. I knew them well and they clearly showed Christ in their efforts. They had every reason to believe that the Lord would give them the victory in game. However, they didn’t win and the disappointment on their faces was evident as we were running around in celebration. Then I recalled the countless other times I have been on that side of the score. I recalled my feelings and frustration. I also concluded that my feelings that Saturday morning after winning were eerily similar to every other day after the game—mow the lawn, clean the house, etc.
Here is my point. If you are feeling weary or discouraged about the winning or losing result, reread Hebrews chapter 12. God clearly points us to our internal faith as a guide in our challenge to persevere. We become so engrossed in the contest before us, the challenge of achieving our short term goals, that we forget God has given us the gift of the game as just part of our WHOLE life experience. Keep reading Hebrews. The blessing isn’t in the winning or losing of the current contest. The blessing comes in living. Remember the hardships in training? Remember the discipline and course corrections you made to improve? Remember the injuries? Many of you already of experienced the day when you no longer can compete. The blessing is in the perseverance – that produces a stronger faith, that fills you with new hope, that allows you to “do the next day in love.” The blessings are in loving others today. The final blessing is our ascension to heaven and living forever with the Lord.
Today, through faith, I see winning as a process that the Lord uses to refine people. There is huge freedom in knowing that since the Lord is in the process I can go for it! Dream big! Work to achieve the goal! But, the winning is IN the process – Invoke your faith in the Holy One and climb the mountain. Summon your faith and see what the Lord wants you to be. Apply your faith to every day and realize that winning isn’t just the contest before us today but all the contests we are privileged to participate in every day!
One quick story (I am a former fighter pilot and all pilots MUST tell a story!): I attended pilot training in 1984. From the outside, from my training folder, I was a student in a struggle. In my first seven flights, I threw up. For seven flights, all I could think about was dying. Once I even considered bailing out! Needless to say, I learned nothing in those flights and I was perpetually struggling to catch up. My goal was to graduate #1 and I was clearly a failure before the first evaluation. Those days, every game was a loss. However, faith that I was in the place God wanted me allowed me to understand that trials bring perseverance and hope. So I continued to “train for the next game.” I did graduate. And I became an instructor pilot and had the awesome privilege of flying F-15 fighter jets! I could have given up flying in those early days, but I do know that through faith I accepted the trials and became stronger. The trials set me up for the blessing to fly fighter jets! I can’t wait to see what heaven has in store for all of us who keep the faith.
Central Christian College (CCC) is alive and well in the middle of the country and nobody knows it. Guess that is our fault—we are relevant and nobody knows it—I want to change the nobody knows it part....
CCC was a junior college started by the Free Methodist Church and has been in McPherson, Kansas (http://www.mcphersonks.org) since 1914. In 2004 we converted ourselves to a 4-year institution, fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
However, nobody knows we exist. We don’t advertise so unless you have been here we aren’t on anyone’s radar. Within the Free Methodist Church we exist within the minds of the greatest generation. CCC enrollment was made almost entirely of those people whose parents sent them here—because that’s the way it used to be. Today it is different. The Church no longer financially supports the college. The structure of the board of trustees used to be assigned by the church. Today the board decides who is on the board; with a small requirement that a percentage will be church members. Outside the Free Methodist Church? Forget itJ
Shall we at CCC blame the Church? Absolutely not. In fact, at some point we need to wake up and make a case for ourselves. I want to make a CASE for Central Christian College
WE are figuring out the needs of the Church. We can Love God and Love Others
WE understand the culture and are educating through the Christian Worldview lens
WE dedicate ourselves to fit hearts, fit minds, fit bodies, and fit souls
Through 16 varsity sports and 27 different undergraduate majors, we change people. Seriously, small, private, Christian principled still has a place for people to grow—IF they only knew.
Cost and Faith based are challenges.
· Especially challenging to rural and inner city families
· Today’s prices forces families to weigh the value of a Christian Education v. cost
· Students almost HAVE to borrow to pay the bill—CCC has figured a way to pay for school without borrowing by working while attending class
2. Faith and the future are in question
· Everyone has a crisis of faith--Where do you want to have it?
· Many young people lose their faith during their very critical years of 18-25
· CCC embraces the question and teaches the value of Christian and the future
This is just to test what it will look like if we post a photo that is not sized appropriately for the space (less than 690 pixels wide).
It will look terrible, I'm sure.