Are we living in the last days? According to God's Word, the answer is a resounding "Yes". According to God's Word in multiple scripture, we recognize the signs.
Monday, July 20, 2015
Friday, July 17, 2015
Those who know me know I do a lot of online reading. I like to stay informed. and I try to read what both sides of any topic are saying. I have to say, it is pretty shameful how many people talk when stating their opinions. I'm not talking strictly liberals, conservatives, atheists or Christians. I am talking about all of them. I have said some pretty shameful things in the past, but I think I've learned a very valuable lesson from befriending a certain lady that thinks totally differently from me about political matters. If you feel the need to state your opinion to someone, never put it on a personal basis.
Name calling is one of the most destructive forms of communication. Yet, many who state their opinion seem to feel that the only way they can change someone's mind is to attack them with labels and bad language. The bullying of our children has come under such scrutiny lately, simply because we see the effects of it, and we loathe such behavior. Still, a great majority of our adult population uses bullying and belittling to one another to make their case. Where do we think these child bullies learn this stuff? They learn it at home, even at school by their teachers. Labeling and name calling have become a way of life, and then we wonder why there is so much hate in the world!
Never use the word "You". Such things as, "You can't seem to get it through your head!" "You are crazy to think such things!" "You conservatives! You all think alike!" "You liberals are all power hungry!" are not only juvenile, they are ineffective. It is so easy to slip into this way of thinking and speaking, and it is an attack on the other person's integrity rather than a statement of fact about the subject. We must be willing to attack the subject matter only. We must know the facts so that we can logically speak about them.
Even worse is the name calling that I see. Again, it is bullying technique that is useless to solve any problem. When calling people names it seems that we'll go to any length to find a word or label to so humiliate and offend, as if drawing attention more to the foolishness of the person's opinion than the problem itself.
I'm convinced that the real problem is that most people simply have an opinion, but they have no facts to back it up. It is ignorance, due to laziness for not wanting to do the work to know what to say. Have you ever noticed how many people will quote things that they have been told are in the bible that are not really there? Who do you know that believes something about our country's Constitution that isn't there at all? If you listen to one side of a news report, it's a good thing to tune in to the other side's reports. You seldom get the whole story from one side of the fence.
When my friend and I discuss politics we seldom get through it without exasperation or raising our voices. We've been known to yell in public places and cause our husbands to shrink back in angst. But we never point verbally or physically to one another. The discussion isn't about us, it's about politics. I admit that she has a better memory for facts than I do, and that really makes me want to resort to finger pointing, but I must refrain. Then, we move on to better subjects like where we're going for lunch, and we laugh our way through the doors. A difference of opinion is never worth hurting another's feelings, bullying or character assassination. My opinion is not more important than my friendship. Know the facts, or keep still.
Wednesday, July 8, 2015
Parents constantly beat themselves up emotionally when any of their children grow to live contrary to what they've been taught during their childhood. We ask, "What did I do wrong?" "What should I have done differently?" "If I had only loved a little more." "Did I love too much?" "What went wrong?" Isn't it a shame that most parents are so eager, most are too eager, to take the blame for their child? God forbid we should allow our child to suffer a little or take on some responsibility for their own actions!
If you read the comments on social media or those attached to news items online you see some of the reason why parents feel so guilty. Those comments are written, almost without exception, by the luckiest parents in the world whose children grew to adulthood to be okay.....anyway. In other words, the parents weren't perfect, but the kids are mature and responsible anyway. Consequently, mom and dad believe that it's all due to their tremendous parenting skills, and if your kid didn't turn out quite so well, well it's no doubt because you were an unloving or inattentive mother who probably worked instead of staying home where good mothers always are. Or, dad was not loving enough, and never came home from work at a decent hour. It's all the parents' fault!
Then there's the men and women who know everything about rearing children, even though they've never had a child and have never even been married. But, it's obvious to them whose fault that kid's problems are, and frankly, they know more about what makes a good marriage, as well.
Let's just take a step back for a minute. I know for a fact that there are terrible and irresponsible parents. I may have been one of them. But, when children reach a certain age, the parent of a normal boy or girl should be able to realize that, no matter if you weren't totally perfect, that child is old enough to know right from wrong, know the basics that he or she was taught, and should now have brains enough to be the responsible one.
Now, I'm not talking about your basic juvenile delinquent here. I'm talking about Tom and Mary's son Tom Jr. who is off smoking pot at age 17 or worse, bullying the 14 year old whose nose is off center, or their daughter Cindy Lou who's rude and obnoxious to most of her high school teachers. Both kids know better. Both kids were taught to have respect for others and to obey the laws. So, if they were taught by mom and dad, and they break the rules anyway, who's to blame?
If the finger pointers are going to use the bible, which they so often do, I sure would like to know what verses they're using to make their points. I can't seem to find anywhere in the good book that says that if a child goes wrong, it's always the parents' fault. What I do find is that the prodigal son had a loving and doting father, but the son strayed away regardless. I find that David was a man for God's heart, but Absalom, his son, had a murderous heart, and for that matter, so did David. Then there was Cain who murdered his brother. Wait a minute! Adam and Eve disobeyed their father, and guess Who that was! Even God, the Creator Father, has children who disobey. I think it's time that those of us who are nursing our guilty feelings about being such bad parents stand up for ourselves for a change. You and I weren't perfect, by any means. But, our offspring need to fess up to the fact that they know better, and it's all their fault for behaving so badly.
Those of you out there with such great adult children who are responsible, God-fearing, law-abiding. good-mannered people who mow their lawns every week and make sure the car payment is on time, need to make a note to yourselves. You should remind yourselves to thank your wonderful Father in heaven that your less than perfect nurturing skills didn't produce what you probably deserved. Be so very thankful that your child turned out okay......anyway......that you never again automatically blame a parent for some snot-nosed kid's bad attitude or foul mouth. You just don't know it, but your grown up, all-American kid was probably just like that once upon a time.