Swimming next to Lake Dixie Springs yesterday with my nine - year old, he asked me what I thought heaven was like. I told him I wasn't sure, and whatever I thought it should be like, someone else might have a different idea.

But isn’t that life? We think many things obvious to us should be obvious to others, but often, we are only looking for a reflection of the image we want.

Our forefathers intended to found a country where we had the freedom to determine that for ourselves. As we’ve been talking about bureaucracies this week, it is clear the danger they present, they want their vision to become ours. The same could be said for social media companies. Their owners foster group-think and that group-think becomes the standard.

To get the America you want, you must take control of the life you want. Make your day, from rising to settling for bed, a reflection of your vision. Mine – family, faith, and freedom. Most of the founders would have agreed. It is on that framework, I believe, we give people the largest framework to venture out and discover the best of themselves.

From the Wall Street Journal today:

“McDonald’s Corp. said its sales are surpassing pre-pandemic levels across the world as more of its dining rooms reopen and U.S. customers try new chicken offerings.”

But that isn’t really why their sales are increasing, later in the article:

“Busy drive-throughs and online sales have boosted McDonald’s and other fast-food chains during the pandemic relative to other restaurants.”

 

From the The Western Front yesterday:

"After over a year of providing to-go orders, running at half-capacity or shutting down completely, restaurants emerging from COVID-19 restrictions aren’t in the clear yet. "

"Washington state fully reopened June 30 and Whatcom County restaurants can now operate at full capacity due to Gov. Jay Inslee’s updated Washington Ready Plan. However, those restaurants continue to face staffing and supply shortages, coupled with a new highly transmissible COVID-19 variant."

Definition of bureaucracy from Merriam-Webster:

1a: a body of nonelected government officials, b: an administrative policy-making group

2: government characterized by specialization of functions, adherence to fixed rules, and a hierarchy of authority

3: a system of administration marked by officialism, red tape, and proliferation

From New Yorker Magazine:

"With the approval of the government, a renowned sexologist ran a dangerous program"

“I didn’t think what was happening was good, but I thought it was normal,” one of the foster children recalled. 

"The experiment was authorized and financially supported by the Berlin Senate. In a report submitted to the Senate, in 1988, Kentler had described it as a “complete success.”

"Nentwig had assumed that Kentler’s experiment ended in the nineteen-seventies. But Marco told her he had lived in his foster home until 2003, when he was twenty-one."

Build your local community. Get involved locally at every level you can. Looking out for you, your family, and your neighbors begins right there where you live.

We landed in Mississippi after a traffic infested journey from Indiana. A quick evening of rest was followed the next day by a float down the Homochitto river, then a relaxing evening on Lake Dixie Springs.

The Homochitto river brought back exciting memories from my youth. I spent more than a few summers speeding along its banks on old-school 3-wheelers, the kind that were banned, and the kind that set your hair on fire with reckless fun.

The lake was a serene scene with kids playing and the sun setting. My son, Gabriel, swam by himself long into the night, joined briefly by his sister, but they were interrupted just as things were getting otherworldly with a good old-fashioned thunder and lightning southern storm.

On the river, more than a couple passing canoes and kayaks of family members said with a smile, “you don’t need much more than this.” I agreed.

July 24, 2021

Who Is Being The Judge?

Reading a comment from a listener got me thinking about judgment. And it begged the question, who is being the judge?

From Merriam-Webster:

Definition of judgment

1a: the process of forming an opinion or evaluation by discerning and comparing

2a: the capacity for judging

 

Definition of judgmental

1: of, relating to, or involving judgment a judgmental error

2: characterized by a tendency to judge harshly judgmental prigs

 

“Ad hominem: (of an argument or reaction) directed against a person rather than the position they are maintaining.”

The name-calling, attacking nature of current discourse is probably the most divisive part of society and communication at the moment. Verbal bullying at all levels, from school kids to national media outlets creates almost a daily powder keg.

As best we can, we must do our part to avoid this. We must separate the person from the position. This doesn’t mean we keep our head in the sand, merely that we do our best to listen, analyze, research, and then base our judgement on that. If we can’t convince someone with reason, attacking them only makes it worse.

July 21, 2021

Where Do We Find God?

In a world where we desperately try to avoid pain and struggle, and where self-satisfaction and pleasure has become a religion, how and where do we find God?

John Bunyan said: "No man, without trials and temptations, can attain a true understanding of the Holy Scriptures."

And the good book in 1 Peter 4:12 directs us:

"Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you."

Walking the streets of Denver, one thing becomes clear: they smoke a lot of weed out here in Colorado.

I couldn’t help but ponder, what happens when you fill the hole of purpose with shadows of meaning.

In Denver today to teach a leadership class, I was three times confronted with the following, “a bag will cost you .10 cents.” This is thanks to a new law In the city and county of Denver, thanks no doubt, to transplants from California!

Can we do some remedial education on cognitive dissonance?

From Websters:

“the state of having inconsistent thoughts, beliefs, or attitudes, especially as relating to behavioral decisions and attitude change.”

As reported this week, 41% of Baltimore public high school students failed to earn even a “D” grade point average. Twice the number of students than the previous year, distance learning during Covid didn’t work out so good.

The good news, the number of students with a B or better stayed about the same.

The lesson, personal responsibility is the most important lesson in life. And the most important factor in education isn’t money as we often hear. Baltimore schools outspend 97% of other large school districts. According to Forbes, that is almost $18,000 per student! Can someone give us that for our homeschool!

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