Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Playing the fool.

Are you so foolish? After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort?
- Galatians 3:3 (NIV)

Do you notice this in our every day life? I am looking for my keys, I saw my little girl with them on Sunday and I am sure that she has hidden them. I am trying not to be angry but I need my keys. I walked around the house for an hour storming around trying to find them. Finally I stopped, prayed, and borrowed my wife's keys. :-) Nope still no sign of them.

Giving up the little things to God is easy; it is when life gets tough that we have issues that we just need to "take care of." We storm about our problem or our situation making decisions making everything based on our own effort.

Salvation is the same way. As humans we have a battle of our free will but it is still difficult to wrap our mind around the fact that we can do nothing good, nothing holy, nothing worthy of heaven. Finding the understanding that for all the good we do are as "filthy rags." We can not be regenerated unless we are chosen, elected, foreknown by God from the beginning of time.

Still ... we have laws and rules that we add, not "conditions" for salvation, but things that a "properly saved Christian does." The battle with legalisms is all around us in every church. Next time you judge someone because their worship is different or you would judge their salvation. Just how foolish are we? I admit, it is hard for me too.

Monday, October 16, 2006

The Downfall of America

Disclaimer: The following post is a viewpoint that is not totally realistic, but perhaps makes a point.

The weekend's conduct by two collegiate football teams further strengthened my "argument." Organized Sports is the Downfall of America.

You can read the article along with a blow by blow description here you can actually watch the horrific footage on YouTube here

Organized sports is destroying the American family. Three year olds are out playing organized sports. Parents stand screaming and shouting from the sidelines at the ref, the coach, the other team. The organized sports themselves justified. Justified by exercise and socialization, both being good for the children, yet tainted with organized sports. This craving for kids in sports takes away from traditional "playtime" and other family activities.

Follow as the child gets a little older. Swim meets, baseball, basketball and other organized sports distract further from the family as mom and dad both begin to ferry the kids around to the different practices and games. Less and less time for what matters. The children's sports schedules begin to dictate family vacations, family devotions and even church time as respect for Sunday being the Lord's day shifts further from America's mind ...

Enter High school, now the kids are starting to drive themselves to practice but still mom and dad are active in the booster department taking more and more time away from the family. IT escalates as some of the children are placed in multiple sports at a time. Running into conflicts between many of the coaches of the different sports. Kids taught to hold the value of winning higher than the value of their family, their education, their future.

Now enter College, scholarships based on performance levels in sports, colleges with kids and players trained by the organized sports mentality. All wrapped up into the value of sports. Now with a prime example of two sports teams, with players driven to play, beating the stuffing out of each other. They are responsible. Their parents are responsible, their school is responsible.

Organized sports has changed from a benefit to our children to a liability to America's future. The downfall of society has many culprits but this is something you can take action about. Perhaps as your children dictate the way you live, you will consider redirecting the value of sports. Perhaps you will not allow organized sports to distract from your family or their education.

If you don't think that organized sports is in every aspect of life. As you sit in church the next couple of months, count the number of times that sports are mentioned. Count the number of times your pastor talks about his golf score, his football team, or perhaps even his children/grand children's sports.

Are sports good for kids? Yes. But they must be put in proper perspective or the family and American will suffer.