Wednesday, November 8, 2017

A Nation at a Crossroads

Our nation continues to slide into moral decay. Everyday, I see stories of people openly mocking the source of our rights. So many now reject objective truth. The Bible was held as the standard for morality and instruction in our nation until about 75 years ago. In the last 75 years, we’ve fallen so far, but the rate at which our culture has decayed has accelerated to a point in the last 10 years, that I see no point of return on a national level without a true spiritual revival. 
I truly believe God has taken his hand of blessing off of our nation. A nation that endorses the murder of babies, openly mocks God’s design for families and marriage, and a burgeoning entitlement state that replaces God with government will be the downfall of this country, if we don’t push back. 
My goal is to fight back on a local level. I intend to explore running for mayor of Washington, Iowa in 4 years. The mayor elected last night is onboard with the current progressive plan of cultural decay and decadence. We can’t continue to mock God if we seek revival. The Body of Christ needs to rise up.
I am frustrated at churches and pastors who won’t speak up. In my research, there are only a handful, a small minority of churches in all of southeast Iowa that actually preach the whole word of God. Part of the cultural decline is a culture of churches selling out to the world and tickling ears instead of preaching with conviction. You can do your part, no matter where you live. If your church doesn’t preach and teach the whole of God’s word, leave that church and find one that does. 
To this end, I will also continue to reach out and work to see souls saved. We have to get the word out that we are living in perilous times and without Jesus, things are going to continue to get worse. 
It’s time we choose. We must either choose to let the forces of darkness win, or we must fight back. I choose to fight. I hope you join me.

I normally use links in my text, but I’ve chosen to cite a few stories below to illustrate my points above. Check them out and let’s continue the discussion.




We can’t approach people from a place of hate, but we also must not be afraid to proclaim truth in love and we mustn’t be silent. We must proclaim the Gospel and all that goes with it. I’ve been guilty of being lax in following God’s law in the past. If anything, the slide our nation is in has prompted me to draw nearer to God and to pull back from a culture seeking to destroy all that is good and true.
It’s time for Christians to stop fellowshipping with forces seeking to destroy them. It’s time for people of faith to pull their kids from public schools. It’s time for people of faith to shut the TV off. It’s time for people of faith to stop going to movies made by people who wish to see us destroyed. It’s time we stopped supporting musicians who wish to see the Gospel minimized. It’s time to stop dressing like the world. It’s time to support the right kinds of businesses and to remove our support from businesses that seek to do us harm. We need to stand up and make our light be seen. 






Sunday, August 13, 2017

Authenticity

Odd, I know. Two posts in a day. I just had to get this off my chest.
My pastor said something last Wednesday that stirred this up and continued to challenge me today.

Too many people aren't real. Too many people have public personas, all polished up and sanitized, yet at work they are nothing like their home or church personality, or their church personality is different that their personality away from church. I gravititate toward those that are the same in all areas, so that I can know them for real.

Be open. Be who you are. People who put on a face for church or for work or for guests in the home bother me. I can't tell if they are sincere or not. I don't want to have to read your mind to know if you are being who you are, or who you think I want you to be. Don't be plastic. Be you, flaws and all. God made you and as long as you aren't trying to be something you're not, I'm good. I know my strengths and my weaknesses. If I stink at doing something, I'm ok with saying it. If I don't have experience in an area, I'm glad to ask. If I am an expert in something, I'm glad to lend a hand or teach someone.

Be joyful because you're a Christian, but don't over sell it. Don't be someone you aren't. Just be yielded to God and your true joy will shine through.

The Enemy is the Enemy

What has happened in Charlottesville, Virginia over the past several days has given me pause. I see some people on the political Right siding with the people protesting the removal of the Robert E. Lee statue. Both sides are making mountains out of mole hills in the situation. If the group protesting the removal had not engaged in Nazi symbolism and claimed Ku Klux Klan lineage, I could see their point. Once they became about race and "White Nationalism", they lost the argument. They are no different than the Black Lives Matter or Antifa(anti fascist) groups opposing them.

Here is where I draw the line. Once a group starts using race and identity in their political argument, I'm done. I don't think the speech rights of either side should be compromised, but once their speech goes kinetic, so to speak, their rights end. Driving a car into a group of people you disagree with is terrorism, the same as if a some jihadi nut from ISIS had done it.

Both sides in this mess are essentially two sides of the same vile group of people. They both seek to have the government right perceived wrongs. As much as I disagree with government white washing history, we risk becoming idolatrous if we place the importance of a statue over that of a human life.

Here is the solution. Elect different people. If you don't want your local reps doing away with a statue you see as honoring your heritage, elect different people. If the majority of voters in a town want to elect people who would remove these monuments, let them. As long as the Federal government isn't dictating what statue goes where and what is OK, I have no issue with it. Use the Constitutional tools at your disposal. Don't act like the voters aren't the ones who are truly responsible.

All sides in this mess are seeking government to right perceived wrongs. Stop depending on government. There is the real solution. Talk to your neighbors. Go to church. Seek God and seek His will. Stop putting government where God should be in your life. Government is not an end all, be all. The White Nationalist/Nazi bigots and the BLM/Antifa statists are all really the same, in the end. They seek to have government impose their will on others. I'm out.

Some will ask, "Well, if you are OK with the removal of these monuments, then you are OK with government saying a baker must bake a cake, etc". Nothing could be further from the truth. What individuals do in the carrying out of commerce is none of the business of government. The maintenance of public areas is the business of government. If a duly elected council or legislature removes a statue, that's on the voters. The government telling a person what to do in their personal lives is unconstitutional. The government pulling down a statue is not unconstitutional. It may be in bad taste, but it isn't illegal. Find new leaders who won't pull down the monuments.

This all comes back to people not reigning in government. All of it. We must move past expecting government to save us or prop us up. Our focus must be on producing citizens who love liberty. Fix the culture of government dependence and all of this will end. This is on all of us who allow it to continue. I pray for revival of the true Church and that the message of the Gospel will be proclaimed. If you trust in God and on His only begotten Son, your need of a nanny state government to do your bidding goes away.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The Time is Now

Politics has worn thin with me. The more I see the administration in Washington, DC work, the less good I see in the GOP. Until a viable new party can dispose the GOP, nothing good will happen politically. The same can be said for the Republican party in Iowa. I just reviewed the list of county chairs for the new Reynolds campaign, and with exception of 4-5 names on the list, the other 1000 names are a veritable who’s who of the crony corporatist, big government, big agriculture cabal that has run Iowa for many years.

I’m pledging right now to not vote for Kim Reynolds in 2018. I will either vote for a small party or unaffiliated candidate or I’ll leave my ballot for governor blank. I’ll work on electing Federalist Party candidates to lower level offices in the state in order to lessen the GOP’s grip on small government rhetoric, backed up by big government results. Sure, some decent things happened in 2017, like the collective bargaining reform, but spending reforms and cuts didn’t actually take place. Taxes in Iowa are still the highest of any Republican controlled state. There are blue states with lower per capita tax burdens. That is unacceptable.

The time is now to punt the GOP and work on taking the right of the individual to keep what they earn and do with their own resources as they see fit.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

How Do We Relate to Other Christians? How Should We?


This piece is more of a written sermon than a regular blog post. I need this just as much as anyone who reads this post.

Matthew 18:


I think we let things go between believers too often. We let issues fester amongst friends and fellow church members. We need to be more open with what an issue that may, if left to fester, would likely divide people. Rather than couching things in patronizing tones or glossing over issues, I think we need to do what the verses in Matthew say and, with love and through prayer, take our issues to the person we have the issue with. We need to forgive, but in order for us to grow, we need to be upfront with each other. Too often, Christians choose to bury their issues with one another and there continues to be an underlying issue that our enemy uses to divide friends and churches. 
This is just a hypothetical example, but hear me out. Away from church, fellow believers have a business issue that is causing strife, whether it be a business and customer conflict or an employee and employer conflict. Rather than concealing our thoughts and trying to tight rope on what we think the other person wants hear, we need to be more open so issues don't remain. We must always seek wise counsel before doing so, but letting a problem simmer just below the surface is unhealthy for all parties involved. I know that if a friend of mine has an issue with me, rather than just talking to others about it, I'd rather be hit square between the eyes with the issue they have with me. I don't like reading between the lines. If someone has an issue with me, I want to work on it. The issue should be brought out in the open between the two parties and then everything possible should be done to make sure there is no strife left in the relationship. I've seen friendships harmed and worse yet, whole churches harmed because people just couldn't be upfront and open with one another.
This could also apply to politcs. If we took our issues up with the source of them, I think we'd find much more satisfaction in achieving a satisfactory result. I, for one, am not afraid to call a state or national representative or Senator and bring the issues I have to someone who may be able to do something about them. 
So many times, we don't seek wise counsel on issues of great magnitude before we make the mistake of saying something of great consequence. I've been guilty of this many times. Even the Bible says this in Proverbs 12: 1The way of a fool [is] right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel [is] wise.
If we can't take wise counsel on a given issue, we need not be involved with what ever we are trying to do until we come to a place where we are willing to heed the counsel of those who've dealt with the issue or problem before. Rather than thinking we have the whole thing figured out because we've read some book(other than the Bible) or we've studied a lot, there is still no substitute for asking for help from those who've been there before. Pride may get in the way of us coming to the realization we need help, but we must not let that happen. Pray, seek wise counsel and then, and only then, step out by faith that what you are doing is what you should do. If it is biblical, we'll see our efforts blessed by God. 
There is no substitute for experience. I am always seeking to learn from people older than me. I also seek people with different backgrounds to learn from. If I am entering a new business, I ask the person who's done it for a long time. When I was new at my church, I sought out a few people that had been there for a long time. If I have an isssue that I don't know much about, I learn about if before diving in. I seek counsel. I ddin't always do this and I bear the scars from those stupid decisions. I think if people, myself included, would seek out each person's strong points and help lift those up, we'd see fewer conflicts in churches and between friends. 
Even marriages break up because people don't seek wise counsel and because the two parties can't be upfront with one another. As humans, we're no good at mind reading. We must be more upfront with one another. Rather than taking offense to someone bringing an issue to our attention, we should thank them for helping us get better. I've learned to yearn for bluntness. I pray more people find this trait for their lives. I'm not talking about insulting one anther. I'm talking about when someone sees an issue, whether of your own doing or not, and brings it to your attention, you step back and see the big picture. Your choice involves many more people than just yourself, no matter how insignificant you see that choice being. 
I think the root of all interpersonal conflicts boils down to two things. Pride (my biggest fault) and doing things out of a sense of duty instead of doing things out of a sense of godly love for one another. If we can't get past our own pride and humble ourselves, we'll have a hard time moving forward for God. Period. If we do things, whether they be at church, at home or in our public lives, with a sense of true Christian love and we do things out of a sense of duty, the task or ministry will falter and fail. It will grow stale and eventually wither and die on the vine. I know I've struggled with both of these issues. I pray and seek counsel to overcome both.
In closing, I think we need to be more upfront and honest. We need to kick our sense of personal pride to the curb and we must seek wise counsel from people (including those outside our normal spheres of influence). If I want to learn to weld, I'm going to go find a welder to teach me. I'm not going to go to a restaurant owner asking how to weld and so on. Lastly, let's put the biblical princples on how to resolve conflict and seek counsel into practice. Our churches and our interpersonal relationships will be the better for it.
I'd love to open this up for discussion. Respond below and let's start the conversation.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Worthless

The GOP is worthless. Period. End of story.

With this latest budget battle being ceded to the left leaning establishment Republicans and the Democrats, the GOP has ceased to be of any use to conservatives. Why someone with a conservative view point, who holds fast to small government principles, would vote for a member of the GOP is beyond me.

Paul Ryan campaigned last year on the anti-establishment wave that swept through the party. Little did people who supported him and the shiny, combed over objection of cult affection know, but they were sold a bill of goods. This administration is fine doing things that only require executive action, but the administration of Donnie Smallhands has become a footstool for the establishment wing of the big government majority in the Republican party.

How can a party that controls every part of DC not pass a budget? If only voters had given the supposed small government party majorites in both houses of Congress and the White House...oh, wait, I guess voters did that very thing. The Constitution mandates that Congress send the President a budget, not a continuing resolution. We need to know where our tax money is going. We need to be able to call out the departments that need to be padlocked and scuttled. This nonsense of funding the whole Obama agenda is lunacy.

Planned Parenthood was not touched in the budget bill. Obamacare is fully funded. These two line items alone are totally unacceptable. I don't want to preached at by stupid people saying conservatives need to take control of the party and change it from within. The cancer is so widespread, if we excised the whole amount of the cancer from the party, the party would die. We are better off ditching this cancer ridden body and starting a new one.

I, for one, am totally on board with the new Federalist Party. I know the people involved. I trust the people involved and I look forward to doing work on the ground here in Iowa for this new party. It's time to start taking over city councils and county commisions. School boards and library boards. State House and State Senate races. We need to show the current two party duopoly that we mean business and if we start at the bottom, when we run a presidential candidate, it won't be a fool's errand.

I love what I've seen so far from this new party. There are different from other minority parties. Those other parties try to start at the top and run a presidential ticket and they always fail because they have no base and no ability to muster a massive nationwide ground game when the time is needed. The people in the Federalist Party are different. They realize that politics should be local. Once the local stuff is tended to, we can work to take back our state and federal governments from the big government forces in both parties. The Federalist Party knows that the 10th Amendment gives the states the power to do things the federal government should not be invovled in. Lets return to a federal government of defined and limited power.

I urge you to do the research and to join our efforts. Click here to check out the Federalist Party and learn how you can help us return to state's rights and individual liberty.

Click here to connect with me on Twitter. You can DM me if you have questions about the Federalist Party. Comment below to start a discussion or if you have general questions.


Friday, April 28, 2017

Read II Timothy 4:1-8 and Take Heed

I've been studying churches as of late. Something my pastor said a while back has stuck with me. Doctrine has been replaced with emotion. Truth has been replaced with efforts to soothe itching ears. Follow along.

The Apostle Paul, in his second letter to Timothy, exposed most churches in our culture today. He said this:

II Timothy 4:1-8
I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. But watch thou in all things, endure, afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry. For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.

Paul was warning Timothy of what was to come. Paul's letters were to fellow believers, not to the lost people. He was telling the Body of Christ what to look out for. If only we'd heed his warning.

Does the mission of a church involve meeting the worldly emotional needs of people who seek to be comforted in their in sins or does it involve glorifying Jesus and imploring people to please God? Many churches default to the former rather than the latter. They strive for one of two things; people in pews or the lack of strife amongst its entrenched donor base. If a pastor and a church focuses on the Gospel, sometimes toes will be stepped on. The Word of God and the Holy Spirit will make people uncomfortable. That isn't a bad thing, contrary to popular belief. Preaching should lead to conviction and action. If it just scratches an itching ear, it is likely not Biblical and most likely, a load of garbage.

Hebrews 4:12
For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

The ability of the Bible to be both and a tool for instruction and comfort is unique. A preacher of the word must be able to preach all parts of the Bible and, through prayer and study, help the people he pastors to be able to apply the Word to their lives. There are so many things in today's society, from media to government to public education to cultural rot, that seek to diminish the importance of the message of the Bible. It is up to Christians to put away the nonsense and do their best to hold fast to what God has preserved for us.

Here is an example of what I mean. In this passage, Jesus is telling his followers that those who have forsaken all worldly blessings for the cause of following Him will be blessed with everlasting life.

Matthew 19:29
And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands. for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life.

This message isn't popular in many prosperity preaching churches or in many so called seeker friendly churches. Too many churches preach that the Christian life is just all sunshine and lollipops. In reality, living a Christian life enables people to get through the tough stretches of life becasue we have a promise of something better. We know our eternal home is in heaven so we can have victory over life's struggles. In today's churches, when something bad happens, the people aren't equipped to overcome so they wash out and blame God, when in reality, it was likely their own flesh that caused their hardship. If they had been taught and led in the proper doctrine, they'd know that God is not the author of deception.

I Corinthians 14:33
For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

II Peter 1:19
We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:

When we try to blame God when something bad happens, it just makes our faith weak. Our situation was most likely of our own making. That's been the case for much of my life. We must be willing to listen when the Holy Spirit steps on our fleshly toes. Praying for forgiveness and repenting is the most effective way to move forward in the Christian life. Leaving behind the baggage of the past is a must, but we must account for that baggage and then leave it behind. It won't help us get to where we need to go.

Lastly, if we acknowledge that doctrine is essential, once we come to the saving knowledge of Jesus, we must follow His commands. One part of   the Bible frequently left out by modern churches is the last commandment He gave His disciples. The Great Commission must be our mission statement.

Matthew 28:18-20
And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

If we won't endeavor to do what God has for us, we might be "believers", but we can't call ourselves Christians. To be a Christian means we must strive to be more Christ-like. This must be the mission of our churches, to make Christians and not just believers.

I look forward to hearing what you have to say. Respond below.