Saturday, June 28, 2008


Kid Territory:Recipes: Rice-A-Rhino

What's gray, very large, endangered, and crazy about apples? That's right, a rhinoceros! Did you know a group of rhinos is called a crash? If you think about their size, power, and poor eyesight, that's a perfect name for them. Did you also know those giant mammals are herbivores?

Apples are special treats the rhinos get when the Photo Caravan Safari trucks filled with visitors travel through the field enclosures at the Wild Animal Park. So in honor of the mighty rhinoceros, let's have Rice-A-Rhino for dinner tonight.

  • 1 1/3 cups peeled, diced apples
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon butter or margarine
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups instant rice

Combine apples, orange juice, water, butter, salt, and cinnamon in a large saucepan.

Stir until mixture boils.

Stir in rice.

Cover with a lid and remove from heat. Let stand for 5 minutes.

Serves 4 hungry rhino-lovers.

@Adult Language

Why is it called "Adult Language" when it is seldom used by mature adults and mostly used by the young and immature?
Just Wondered

Friday, June 27, 2008

Obama Or McCain - Why Vote?

Obama And McCain - By Thomas Sowell June 5, 2008
"Now that the two parties have finally selected their presidential candidates, it is time for a sober-- if not grim-- assessment of where we are.

Not since 1972 have we been presented with two such painfully inadequate candidates. When Election Day came that year, I could not bring myself to vote for either George McGovern or Richard Nixon. I stayed home. This year, none of us has that luxury. While all sorts of gushing is going on in the media, and posturing is going on in politics, the biggest national sponsor of terrorism in the world-- Iran-- is moving step by step toward building a nuclear bomb.

The point when they get that bomb will be the point of no return. Iran's nuclear bomb will be the terrorists' nuclear bomb-- and they can make 9/11 look like child's play.All the options that are on the table right now will be swept off the table forever. Our choices will be to give in to whatever the terrorists demand-- however outrageous those demands might be-- or to risk seeing American cities start disappearing in radioactive mushroom clouds.

All the things we are preoccupied with today, from the price of gasoline to health care to global warming, will suddenly no longer matter.Just as the Nazis did not find it enough to simply kill people in their concentration camps, but had to humiliate and dehumanize them first, so we can expect terrorists with nuclear weapons to both humiliate us and force us to humiliate ourselves, before they finally start killing us.

They have already telegraphed their punches with their sadistic beheadings of innocent civilians, and with the popularity of videotapes of those beheadings in the Middle East. They have already telegraphed their intention to dictate to us with such things as Osama bin Laden's threats to target those places in America that did not vote the way he prescribed in the 2004 elections. He could not back up those threats then but he may be able to in a very few years.

The terrorists have given us as clear a picture of what they are all about as Adolf Hitler and the Nazis did during the 1930s-- and our "leaders" and intelligentsia have ignored the warning signs as resolutely as the "leaders" and intelligentsia of the 1930s downplayed the dangers of Hitler.

We are much like people drifting down the Niagara River, oblivious to the waterfalls up ahead. Once we go over those falls, we cannot come back up again.

What does this have to do with today's presidential candidates? It has everything to do with them. One of these candidates will determine what we are going to do to stop Iran from going nuclear-- or whether we are going to do anything other than talk, as Western leaders talked in the 1930s.

There is one big difference between now and the 1930s. Although the West's lack of military preparedness and its political irresolution led to three solid years of devastating losses to Nazi Germany and imperial Japan, nevertheless when all the West's industrial and military forces were finally mobilized, the democracies were able to turn the tide and win decisively. But you cannot lose a nuclear war for three years and then come back. You cannot even sustain the will to resist for three years when you are first broken down morally by threats and then devastated by nuclear bombs.

Our one window of opportunity to prevent this will occur within the term of whoever becomes President of the United States next January.At a time like this, we do not have the luxury of waiting for our ideal candidate or of indulging our emotions by voting for some third party candidate to show our displeasure-- at the cost of putting someone in the White House who is not up to the job.

Senator John McCain has been criticized in this column many times. But, when all is said and done, Senator McCain has not spent decades aiding and abetting people who hate America. On the contrary, he has paid a huge price for resisting our enemies, even when they held him prisoner and tortured him. The choice between him and Barack Obama should be a no-brainer."

Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305.

His Web site is

Thursday, June 26, 2008

****Dress Modestly, With Decency and Propriety

I had no intention of getting into this rant today but I was inspired by Dan Phillips who reposted an item from 2006 titled, "Sister...Show Mercy" over at Pyromaniacs. Dan has done an excellent job of addressing this issue with biblical principles and he does it with sensitivity, diplomacy, and grace. It is worth reading and I will not attempt to regurgitate his points.

But I do want to add on because this has been a touchy subject on my mind for a long time. So, ladies, at the risk of sparking some outrage and possible accusations of being a dirty, old degenerate, I am going to be more direct and honest with the truth that none of your husbands are willing to tell you and most of them will deny. But you really need to hear this stuff anyway. In disconnected order, I offer these random thoughts for your edification:
  • I don’t care how sexy you think you look, with the exception of a very few, most women are not nearly as attractive as they imagine themselves. Your bare midriffs with your love handles, pouches, and stretch marks are not all that great to look at. Frankly, for most of you, more covering is far more attractive.
  • Pregnancy is a beautiful thing but your “ready to pop” belly, stuffed into a size 4T stretch tee and the bottom half exposed to the sunlight, is not.
  • You might think your little thirteen-year-old looks cute when you allow her to make herself up like a Britney Spears wannabe but (pay attention here) she looks sensuous, she looks seductive, she’s HOT. Yeah, that’s right, I said it here first. Is that really the way you want guys to look at her? Well, that’s the way most men out there, the young studs and the old geezers alike, are looking at your innocent little girl and you are not helpful when you allow her to parade her body publicly or worse, expose herself to dangerous perverts and creeps.
  • Most men are attracted to female flesh. I'm sorry, that's just the way God wired us. Sometimes when we are walking in a public place and some hot, scantily clad tart flaunting her wares passes by, my wife will ask me, “Did you see that?” I always answer the same way. I play dumb (and your husband does too). “See what?” I ask. “No, I didn’t see anything.” Do you think we are crazy enough to tell you the truth?
  • I know this is going to shock some of you but it needs to be said. Just because you are nursing your baby doesn’t excuse you for exposing your breasts. In this culture, breasts are sexually arousing to most men even when there are infant lips attached to them. I know, I’ve heard it many times before. “Breastfeeding is a beautiful, natural thing,” some of you will argue. Yes, it is. But so is making love to your spouse. It's just not all that pretty or appropriate in public view.
  • There is a good reason for the use of choir robes in church. It ought to be illegal for some people to choose their own clothing. In ministry, our choice of clothing should reflect our respect for God. It is very uncomfortable for most men, who are trying to remain focused on Him, when you are up there displaying your thighs, exposing your tummy, revealing your cleavage, or accentuating your bosom.
  • If you happen to be on a worship team, listen up. I don’t care how much you love Jesus or how sincere you are in your desire to magnify the Lord and lead the people in worship. Whenever anything you do or say distracts attention from God, you have lost it. You become the center of attention and your ministry fails. Don’t insult us or distract us with your apparel or lack of it. Cover yourself and show us the Lord.
I say all this sincerely in love,

“I (would that you) dress modestly, with decency and propriety…,
appropriate for (those) who profess to worship God.”
1 Tim. 2:9 paraphrased

Monday, June 23, 2008

The Edifying Use Of Sarcasm

I’ve said it before; I am often criticized for the prevalence of sarcasm in this blog. It goes something like this. “Suppose a non-believer or a new believer finds his way onto this site. Will your words be edifying or harmful? Or will your sarcasm cause a brother to stumble?

Well I don’t think the answer is a simple one but I do think the question is too overly simplistic. Frankly, I think sarcasm, satire and any other literary tricks that can make a cutting point to get someone’s attention can be edifying. Rush Limbaugh often says he illustrates absurdity by being absurd.

Now I know that an argument cannot be proved with anecdotes but I think it might be appropriate here to illustrate something that has happened on my blog site more than once.

I have posted an item on this site titled The Magic Prayer That Will Change Your Eternity. It is very sarcastic in style and extremely critical of Rick Warren’s overly simple, “repeat after me this touchy feely, anemic, God love’s you and has a wonderful plan for your best life now and Presto, you’re part of the happy family,” prayer that can lead people to hell with a false hope.

So what? you ask. I have installed this little Live Traffic Feed tracking gadget on the right column that shows where visitors are coming from. Although I cannot tell who they are, I can sometimes see how they happened to arrive on my site. For example, often, people find my blog while searching for key words or phrases on Google. Today (as on several other occasions in the past) someone found this blog post by searching the phrase, “magic prayers to god.” When he arrived here, he immediately encounterd my “WARNING WARNING WARNING” to NOT trust anyone’s magic prayer.

The traffic feed also shows me where he went when he left. In this case he left via an item titled, “How Can I Be Free From The Wrath Of God?” In my sarcastic post, I urged readers to click on that link at the top of that column if they have any serious questions or doubts about their eternal standing with God. This visitor did just that and found himself at a very clear, doctrinally sound explanation of the Good News of salvation by John MacArthur at Grace To You.

So, I don’t know who this visitor is or what his condition is before God. What I do know is that he did not search Google looking for “how to repent from my sin and beg the Righteous and Holy God for mercy and grace.” He was looking for some sort of a magic prayer.

I also know that God is sovereign in salvation and He uses His Word (as is evident in John MacArthur’s Gospel presentation) as the living and powerful vehicle to accomplish that work.

I pray for this person's salvation.

Christianity Is Not For You

"...if you’re hoping to get control of all your problems –Christianity is not for you. If you are looking for success, happiness, or freedom from pain – Christianity is not for you. If you are looking to make yourself FEEL better, appease your flesh, and have fun and be care-free – RUN, RUN, RUN from Biblical Christianity – run and catch an episode of Joel Osteen or Oprah or someone like that because that's what you are looking for -- not Biblical Christianity."
Jason Robertson

An excerpt from, You Can't Hook Leviathan By The Nose

Posted by Jason E. Robertson at FIDE-O 6/18/08

Saturday, June 21, 2008

A Crash of Rhinos

A crash is "the collective noun used to describe more than one rhinoceros." A rhinoceros can see only 30 feet ahead of itself, so when a herd of them begins to run, they have no idea where they are going, where they will stop, or what they're going to do when they get there. In fact, running at 44 feet per second, they can't even see a second ahead of themselves.
What an appropriate picture of what it is to be followers of Christ. God seldom shows us what’s ahead. He just asks that we give everything over to Him and trust Him completely.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

A Calvinist, A Baptist, and A Christian

“I am never ashamed to avow myself a Calvinist…I do not hesitate to take the name of Baptist…but if I am asked to say what is my creed, I think I must reply-‘It is Jesus Christ.’”

Charles Spurgeon

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

As Much As This Hurts, I Am Offering My Help To John McCain

Yesterday I posted the letter I sent to the DNC. Here is the letter I sent to the RNC.

My wife is fearful that some secret government men in black suits and dark glasses are going to surveil our house and tap our phone lines. They have more to worry about than me. I did get some responses to my letters though. Both committees thanked me for my support for their causes, promised to pass my letters higher up for immediate attention, and asked me to send money. THAT IS PROOF THAT THEY ARE ALL IGNORANT, CLUELESS IDIOTS OR THEY DON'T EVEN READ THE MAIL. I think both!

To the Republican National Committee;

I feel badly that your party has NO CONSERVATIVE CANDIDATE in this election. If I can be of help, I'm willing to run as the Republican Vice Presidential candidate.

There is one problem though. Unlike John McCain, I am NOT a Jello moderate. I do hold to conservative principles and convictions. My name on your ticket might help your campaign to capture some of those votes of disenfranchised Clinton supporters who have nowhere else to go. And I am certain that a lot of those angry Republicans who have absolutely NO CONSERVATIVE CANDIDATE to vote for, might actually get out and vote if they see a conservative’s name on the ticket. Also, some people tell me I look good in a suit.

Although I don’t agree with your party’s ideology (the Republican Party abandoned conservatism a long time ago), I am willing to demean myself and run as a Republican for the money.

Let me know if I can be of help but you better act quickly because I have also made a similar offer to the Obama campaign and I will take the first offer that comes along.

Ralph M. Petersen

Help For The Obama Campaign - My Offer To The Democrat National Committee

I sent this letter to the DNC on June 12, 2008. Tomorrow I will reprint my letter to the RNC.

To: The Democrat National Committee

I feel badly that your candidate for President is unable to find a suitable running mate. If I can be of help, I'm willing to run as the Democrat Vice Presidential candidate.

I must caution you though; there are some indiscretions in my past that I'm not particularly proud and I am a long-time member of my church. But those issues should not be problematic; they probably pale in comparison to Mr. Obama’s and besides, my pastor loves America.

On the positive side, although I tend to be somewhat cynical, I think I'm much happier than Mr. Obama and I know I am happier than Mrs. Obama and most of the lunatic fringe in the Democrat Party. And I'm a conservative so my name on your ticket might help the campaign recover the votes of some of those angry Clinton supporters as well as a lot of those Republicans who have absolutely NO CONSERVATIVE CANDIDATE to vote for. Also, some people tell me I look good in a suit.

Although I abhor everything your party stands for, I am willing to prostitute myself for the money and the notoriety. Let me know if I can be of help.

Ralph M. Petersen

Monday, June 16, 2008

If God Owns An Assault Rifle, California Is In The Crosshairs

America is no longer a Christian nation. We protect profane and obscene expression. We kill babies. Our education system rejects God’s truth. We prohibit public expressions of faith. We legalize sodomy. We promote gambling, drug addiction and promiscuity. We discourage work and reward slothfulness. Our courts rebel against God’s laws.

When King Solomon finished building the Temple, God warned His people that, if they turned away from Him and disobeyed His laws, and if they worshipped other gods, then He would uproot them from the land that He had given them. He said that He would reject the Temple that He had set apart to His honor and make it an object of ridicule among all the nations.” (II Chronicles 7:19-20 paraphrased)

After the attack from evil cowardly enemy combatants on Sept. 11, do you remember how this nation began to cry out to God for comfort, protection, and guidance. Suddenly we were praying again in the streets, in the schools and in congress. God was hearing from people whom He has not heard from in years.

I have a poster hanging in my office in memory of that day that says, “We Will Never Forget.” Forget what? In just a few short years, our memories of that day have faded, our attention on God has practically disappeared, and our ungrateful nation is back to its evil devices.

Today (June 16, 2008) is a memorable day of infamy. The Supreme Court of the State of California has thumbed its nose at God, and legalized queer marriages. Ruth Graham, the wife of Billy Graham, said, "If God doesn’t judge America (California), He owes Sodom and Gomorrah an apology.” Scripture is clear; God punishes nations, including His own people, for their national immorality. California may be a dangerous place to live because, if God owns an assault weapon, we are probably in the crosshairs.

How should we pray if we really want to get His mercy for our national shame? It will take more than just bumper stickers, “moments of silence,” or “happy thoughts.” God requires His people to approach Him with humility and penitence. Along with His warning to Israel, He also made this promise: “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land." (II Chronicles 7:14)

Friday, June 13, 2008

The Man Who Built A Rhinoceros From A Kit

ONCE THERE WAS a man who decided to build a rhinoceros from a kit.

His sister, who had never liked rhinoceroi, warned him that no good would ever come from it. “You’ll get trampled flat like a tortilla, that’s what will happen,” she said. “You can’t keep a rhinoceros around the house.”

“It’s not a terribly big one,” he answered. “And I like building things.”

“It will stomp you into a jelly,” she assured him. But he kept working, screwing the back legs into assembly no. 5 as shown in fig. 3-b.

Later on one of his friends stopped by to see how he was doing. “Still building that rhinoceros,” the friend said in a slightly patronizing way.

“Just about halfway done,” the man said, attaching the hindquarters to the spine as shown in fig. 13-h.

“Don’t hold much with rhinocerosesses,” the friend said. “They stomp all over you and expect you to like it.”

“It’s only a medium-sized one,” the man said, and he continued fiddling with his screwdriver and glue gun.

After a little while, a woman came to read the gas meter. “Building a rhinoceros?” she asked, just to make pleasant conversation.

“I’m getting close to finished now,” the man answered, attaching shoulder assembly (3) to abdominal cavity (4) as shown in fig. 21-m.

“I knew a guy who bought a ready-made rhino from K-mart,” the meter-reader said. “That thing stomped him flatter than Cleveland.”

“It’s not the most powerful model,” the man responded, and he snapped the shoulders into place with a satisfying click.

At last the man was ready to screw the horn in place to complete his rhinoceros. “Don’t do it,” his sister warned him. “It’ll squash you to tapioca.”

“Don’t do it,” said the friend. “You’ll get trampled for sure.”

“Don’t do it,” said the meter-reader, who was still hanging around for some reason. “You’ll be flattened in seconds.”

But the man screwed the horn in anyway, and now he and his rhinoceros are the best of friends, running a small antique shop from a storefront near their home. Which just goes to show you what a lot of meddling busybodies the people around you are, and I wouldn’t listen to them at all if I were you.

From Dr. Boli's Celebrated Magazine. Used by permission.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

The Five Solas; Evidence of the Genuine Gospel

"The Reformers from the 16th and 17th Centuries gave us a method of understanding this exclusive Gospel. The Five Solas are the polemic, divisive, markers that are evidence of the genuine Gospel. They state that it is from Scripture Alone that we learn that Salvation is by Grace Alone through Faith Alone in Christ Alone to the Glory of God Alone. Any emphasis outside of this marks that form of the gospel as false. No part of it can be removed and used instead nor can they stand apart from the rest. 

These Five Solas together with nothing taken away and nothing added seems quite narrow doesn’t it? 

That is because the Gospel is narrow for it is the narrow gate. Christ is the only way to God and those whom He saves come to Him on His terms, not theirs. These terms do not include religiosity. No, there is nothing added. We come empty handed to the cross.

What we must never forget is that God is Sovereign. He is going to save His people, not by our efforts, but as we obey Him in making disciples wherever He has us. He saves His people from first to last. He preserves them eternally. He has graciously given us the opportunity to be part of this great work of bringing people into the Kingdom."

Mike Ratliff

from: Unbelief and the Hard Heart
posted at Possessing The Treasure May 6, 2008

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Even Nature Agrees, Children Need Mothers AND FATHERS

It seems appalling to me how many people, especially the militant feminists, perpetuate and actually believe the popular, contemporary idea that a father in the home is irrelevant or unnecessary. And for those who are willfully ignorant of the truth and who are looking to reinforce that foolishness, there are several, so called “studies” suggesting that traditional family structures with both a mother and a father are unnecessary in the successful development of well-adjusted children.

Yet, in spite of those bogus "studies," the absence of fathers in the home, due to the breakdown of traditional family structures has resulted in a dearth of strong male influence on young people in general and boys in particular. And that, in my opinion, is the reason we have so many sissy boys who grow up to become girly men.

While channel surfing one night, I was drawn to a “60 Minutes” story about some recent, unusual deaths of white rhinoceroses (of course that caught my attention) in an African wildlife preserve. Nearly ten percent of them had been senselessly killed. Park officials did not suspect that the killings were the work of poachers because the horns had not been removed. They eventually discovered that the perpetrators were ”a gang of juvenile delinquents.”

They started with annoying pranks like dousing the Rhinos with water or pelting them with dirt. Soon their taunting turned mean-spirited and they began to drive the rhinos off their turf. The gang grew increasingly more sinister and eventually started beating the rhinos to death with stones and clubs.

In their attempts to protect the rhinos, one ranger actually shot and killed one of the delinquents. A park representative told the reporter, “the problem is they (the delinquents) don’t have any role models; everyone needs a role model.”

So who were these delinquents? They were young, bull elephants. About twenty years ago, the elephant population had grown too large for the preserve. To control the growth, the older, mature male elephants were destroyed and the young ones were saved. Wildlife management officials now realize how those decisions resulted in the dysfunctional socialization of the elephants. They made the following observations:
  • Mature bulls teach the young how to act in elephant society and how to cohabitate with other species in their environment.

  • Since there were no mature bulls in the herd, the young bulls were unchallenged and uncontrolled in their sexual activities.

  • The sexual activity of the young elephants caused high testosterone production and contributed to the aggressiveness that resulted in the killing of the rhinos.
So now wildlife managers are importing and reintroducing stronger and more mature bull elephants into the herds to become “step-fathers.” But officials believe that it may be too late and that it may become necessary to kill several others before they can correct the problem.

Now, unless you are irrational and unthinking or just plain stupid, you must surely recognize some parallel principles for human socialization. Robert Louis Stevenson said, “Everybody, sooner or later, sits down to a banquet of consequences.”

In his book, “Anchor Man,” Steve Farrar presents an extensive menu for the “banquet of consequences” that has been set before us as a result of an increasingly fatherless America.

  • 85 percent of all children who exhibit behavioral disorders come from fatherless homes.

  • 90 percent of all homeless and runaway children are from fatherless homes.

  • 71 percent of all high school dropouts come from fatherless homes.

  • 75 percent of all adolescent patients in chemical abuse centers come from fatherless homes.

  • 63 percent of youth suicides are from fatherless homes.

  • 70 percent of juveniles in state-operated institutions come from fatherless homes.

  • 85 percent of all youths sitting in prisons grew up in fatherless homes.

  • 80 percent of rapists come from fatherless homes.
Nearly half of American children live in fatherless homes and we have been told that there would be no adverse affects. But there are. In an article titled “Life Without Father,” (New York Free Press, 1996), David Popenoe notes, “…from careful examination of the evidence, today’s fatherlessness has led to social turmoil - - damaged children, unhappy children, aimless children, children who strike back with pathological behavior and violence…The repercussions go far beyond children to include a steady deterioration in the lives of adult men and women. If present trends continue, our society could be on the verge of committing social suicide.”

I believe boys need good, strong, godly men to teach them how to become real men (girls need dads too). People will argue and experts will disagree, but I am thankful that I had a father who was present and involved in my upbringing and, along the way, there were several good male influences and role models in my life.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Calvin's TULIP and Arminius' DAISY

If the flower of Calvinism is the TULIP, then is it true that the flower of Arminianism is the Daisy (as in, "He loves me, He loves me not")?

Just Wondered.
Afterthought - A reader (Daisy) suggested the "Forget-Me-Not" instead of the daisy. Read her comment.

Monday, June 9, 2008

****California's Supreme Court Ruling On Marriage; Finally, I Can Marry My True Love

I have a confession to make. I’m sure this will shock a lot of people and, no doubt, hurt some who are very close to me. I have been covering this hidden secret for years but now, I can finally reveal the deepest passions of my heart. I have been married to the same woman for 48 years. They have been good years (she is a wonderful woman) but she was not my first love. But, because of the legal climate in 1969, I could not marry my first love. Back then, the law would only recognize marriage between a man and a woman. In fact, back then we all just took for granted that there were only two genders- male and female. Today, with so many options, things are really quite confusing. Nevertheless, since June 16, 2008 the state of California has recognized legal marriages other than just men with women. And in the subsequent years, many other states, supported by the federal government and upheld by the courts, have followed suit.  Today, our world is much more tolerant and accepting of all kinds of relationships.

 So, after all these years I am finally free to enter into a legal committed relationship with my real love that has been silently and patiently waiting close by for years. Yes, we have been discreetly seeing each other regularly (sometimes several times a day). When we are together I feel so filled and happy. But when we are apart, it's like there is this empty hole in my gut. I constantly obsess about how we can have just a few more fleeting moments together. I am uncontrollably drawn at every opportunity. The real love of my life is always there to give me whatever I want whenever I have needs. When I am hot and tired, my true love provides a cool, refreshing drink. When I long for delicate pleasures, I go there to find indescribably sweet desserts. And when I ache with hunger, I always come away fully satisfied and never disappointed.

So, just as soon as I can figure out how to break the news to my wife and arrange for the divorce, my refrigerator and I can finally spend the rest of our days together in wedded bliss.

The Wisdom and Expertise of Old Age

One of the normal effects of aging is a general slowing down of motor skills, information processing and reaction time. But that isn’t necessarily always significant in practical terms. Researchers have found that, although younger people are faster, older people tend to make fewer mistakes thereby remaining competent and competitive with younger people.

I know, some will argue and offer anecdotal examples to make the point. And I will concede that there may be some activities, like driving, where a slower reaction time can be dangerous. Yet, in my own professional experience, I see many very elderly drivers who continue to successfully operate their automobiles without serious harm or incident.

How do they do that? It’s not just luck. In the field of geriatrics (the study of aging), there is a well-documented phenomenon to explain that. It is called the “speed-accuracy trade-off.” While younger drivers find that their rapid responses and quick reactions often enable them to be less careful or more aggressive, older drivers compensate for their slower reaction time by reducing their speed, looking further ahead and planning ways to minimize risks. Some older drivers limit their driving to times when traffic is light. Others move to more rural areas or smaller towns, or avoid freeways. I knew an elderly woman who planned her routes so that she never had to make a left turn.

Many people remain independent and productive in their old age because they have learned to rely more on experience, expertise and accuracy to compensate for their loss of speed or strength.

About thirty years ago, as a young plastering contractor, I hired John in his late 70’s. He was a skilled, journeyman plasterer but old age had certainly slowed him down. Although he never complained, I could tell, by watching him, that he endured a great deal of pain.

John had a very strange way of using his tools. Sometimes, when no one was looking, I tried to mimic his technique but I never could master his unconventional style. One day I asked Him about it. “Look at the way you youngsters work,” he said. “You take a trowel full of mud, bend over and reach all the way down to the bottom of the wall. That’s one move. Then you lift and drag it back up on the wall. That’s two. Then you have to bend over again and trowel it back down to the bottom of the wall. That’s three. Then you pull your arm back and raise yourself back upright. That’s four strokes. I just push the mud down the wall and come back up empty, one stroke down and one stroke up. That’s half the moves. I use gravity instead of lifting and I only bend over once. When you get to be as old and tired as I am, you learn to make every move count.”

By minimizing his movements, John could do the same amount of work as the other guys on the crew with only half the physical effort. Sure, the younger guys were stronger and faster. They often kidded him but old John just kept slugging away. He was dependable, consistent, and deliberate. He knew what he was doing and he always got the job done with finesse and style.

“The glory of the young is their strength; the gray hair of experience is the splendor of the old.” Proverbs 20:29

"…Be steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as you know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord." I Cor. 15:58

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Children Missing From Church

Do you remember when your church had young people who actually attended the services? We used to see them. They all sat together down in the front sections. We knew their names. They were polite and they knew how to carry on an intelligent conversation. Where did they all go?

There has been a paradigm shift in most churches regarding youth ministries. About twenty years ago, influenced by Youth Specialties (a popular resource for youth ministry), youth workers began to isolate young people in their own cultural environments in order to be more relatable. I think that was a stupid mistake. Today, Youth Specialties is moving in more dangerous directions toward mysticism and spiritual formation. Ironically, this generation has difficulty relating to adults at all. I really hope church leaders wake up on this before too many more generations are severely damaged by this inane experiment.

The following excerpts are from a post titled, Children Missing From Church.

Does anyone else find it amazing to what lengths a well-meaning children's church coordinator will go to, to try and entice your children into the children's programing?

We wish our church offered a Sunday school hour but all their children's programs run during service so we keep our children with us.

One is told that children will never get anything out of the adult service. Who came up with this notion? My children sit and listen to Wind in the Willows and Charles Dickens. Why in the world would they be unable to understand the pastor's sermon? Sure, they will miss some of the application but they are building a foundation of vocabulary and knowledge for future use. They are also building the habit of corporate worship.

I have never seen a Jr. or Sr. High student in our church service. As far as I can tell they have their own church service. I just don't understand it. The problem as I see it is that these students become adults and they NEVER join the adult service. They are staying for longer and longer periods of time in the Sr. High programs, then forming their own young adult programs, then going back to Sr. High to help lead (never having had any type of mature discipleship) or quitting church altogether. Is it any wonder we have a generation of young adults who are spiritually immature and doctrinally shallow? I am convinced we need to ditch all that stuff and simply worship together.

Why do we think it is better to split everyone up? Why do we discount the importance of the older generation's influence on the younger and vice versa? I'll never forget that little old lady who always brought me a banana or some piece of fruit each week when my Dad was preaching in a tiny little church on Sunday afternoons. She enriched my life and I would have that same experience for my children even if I have to fend off passionate well-meaning children's church leaders in order to make it happen.

posted by DAISY

Daisy is an amazing, young, Christian, stay-at-home-mother of two. She and her husband are both professional educators who are smart enough to keep their children far away from the public institutions of godless, secular humanism. She home schools and helps many others to do the same. She is a home-economist and nutritionist. And she has a degree in theology. Besides all that, she is an intelligent conservative.

Her blog, Lesser Road Academy, is full of useful information about faith, family life, home schooling, and nutrition. I am adding it to my list of favorites.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Wrinkles The Rhino

This fellow I know,
a rotund rhino,
finds grazing completely preposterous.

Prefers reading sonnets
to birds sitting on it,
forgetting to be a rhinoserous.

Poem and Artwork by Linda Silvestriby at Sketched Out. Copyright protected ©Linda Silvestriby. Used by permission.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Ashamed to Be Baptist

Last weekend (May 31, 2008) this story, "Local Southern Baptists Cool the Fire and Brimstone," broke in our newspaper in southern California. The Press-Enterprise story written by David Olson relates how several Southern Baptist Churches in southern California are rejecting traditional church practices and redefining what it means to be part of the America’s largest protestant denomination.
Apparently, most California Southern Baptist Churches do not carry the denomination’s name. In fact, according to a spokesman for the California Southern Baptist Convention, nearly half of California Southern Baptist churches do not even use the name, "Baptist." These newly defined churches want to reject and dispel old-fashioned ideas like singing hymns, reading the Bible, and hearing judgmental sermons about sin, hell, fire and brimstone.

They boast about their tattooed and pierced members who gather in downtown nightclubs to worship in leather and chains, and punk-rock clothing. “Everyone is welcome -- it doesn't matter if you've got bloo (sic) hair or no hair." One church even funded a ministry to strippers but ended the relationship when the leader separated from her husband for “unbiblical reasons.”

The Rev. Matt Brown, pastor of Sandals Church, boasts that he uses curse words in his sermons to make a point. Can anyone imagine Jerry Falwell or Adrian Rogers doing that?

What is going on here? In recent weeks, we have heard some pretty outrageous profane language from two clergymen in the pulpit at Barack Obama's church. I ranted in another post not long ago about this new epidemic practice of pastors profaning their pulpits by using vulgarity in their sermons; I guess they must think it makes them more relatable and cool. But it does neither! It is a disgusting practice and, in my opinion, a confusing conundrum of mixed messages.

“Profanity is the use of strong words by weak people.”