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22 Responses

  1. The New Victor says:

    On my back fence and two houses to the right, there is… pain.

    I was sitting on my back porch last night and I heard a mother yelling at her kid. This isn’t the first time. I also heard it once on a Saturday morning, and another daytime incident directed at an adult.

    I’ve thought about looking up their address in case I needed to call the cops.

    Last night I only heard the little girl cry out once, and the mother yelled a little more (triggered by bath time issues from what I could hear). I listened for any strikes or something severe, but it ended. I cried, I prayed, then cried a little bit more.

    What bugs me about all that is talked about, the “cause de jour” driven by social media these days misses the root of so much pain and sin: it starts in the home. Many who fancy themselves SJWs are also severely dysfunctional behind closed doors. It sickens me, but that’s another issue.

    An influential psychologist called this “intergenerational transmission.” Dysfunction gets passed down the family lines, either by perpetrators, or those who are victims who end up on dysfunctional and often abusive relationships because, as they told us in at risk youth mentoring, “you don’t know what you don’t know.” Abuse is familiar and you just deal with it because you were conditioned to deal with it. Victims, too, can end up hurting their own children by modeling the dysfunction of their childhoods.

    I’m thankful to God for the lambs he has given me. I pray for strength and wisdom to raise them in our Christian faith (evangelical or otherwise tribe ;>) and this God show them mercy to draw them to seek Him, despite my failings.

    And I pray for that household over the back fence…. and the little girl over the back fence whose angel sees the face of our Father in heaven.

  2. Owen says:

    New Victor,

    Your words hit very close to home for me and my household.
    It starts in the home. Amen to that.
    A member of our household has experienced abuse in the past (all during childhood/teenhood), and yet somehow God broke the intergenerational cycle. God gave this family member the wisdom to see that the cycle of abuse did not need to be repeated, that there was another way to go.
    It’s very difficult. And it’s unfair. Because it’s not the victim’s fault that any of it happened. And yet, when the victim grows into an adult, there is a choice to be made -either to take the easier route and continue with what you were conditioned with, or find help to break out of it. Noone could blame them if they can’t see the way to making the more difficult choice, (so often, they don’t even know there is any other way), but by the grace of God, some of them do.
    And every day I thank Him for it.
    And,I pray for those still stuck in it.

  3. Jean says:

    “But when I saw that their conduct was not in step with the truth of the gospel, I said to Cephas before them all, ‘If you, though a Jew, live like a Gentile and not like a Jew, how can you force the Gentiles to live like Jews?’ ” (Gal 4:14)

    “No one except Paul had his eyes open. Consequently it was his duty to reprove Peter and his followers for swerving from the truth of the Gospel. It was no easy task for Paul to reprimand Peter. To the honor of Peter it must be said that he took the correction. No doubt, he freely acknowledged his fault.

    The person who can rightly divide Law and Gospel has reason to thank God. He is a true theologian. I must confess that in times of temptation I do not always know how to do it. To divide Law and Gospel means to place the Gospel in heaven, and to keep the Law on earth; to call the righteousness of the Gospel heavenly, and the righteousness of the Law earthly; to put as much difference between the righteousness of the Gospel and that of the Law, as there is difference between day and night. If it is a question of faith or conscience, ignore the Law entirely. If it is a question of works, then lift high the lantern of works and the righteousness of the Law. If your conscience is oppressed with a sense of sin, talk to your conscience. Say: “You are now groveling in the dirt. You are now a laboring ass. Go ahead, and carry your burden. But why don’t you mount up to heaven? There the Law cannot follow you!” Leave the ass burdened with laws behind in the valley. But your conscience, let it ascend with Isaac into the mountain.

    In civil life obedience to the law is severely required. In civil life Gospel, conscience, grace, remission of sins, Christ Himself, do not count, but only Moses with the lawbooks. If we bear in mind this distinction, neither Gospel nor Law shall trespass upon each other. The moment Law and sin cross into heaven, i.e., your conscience, kick them out. On the other hand, when grace wanders unto the earth, i.e., into the body, tell grace: “You have no business to be around the dreg and dung of this bodily life. You belong in heaven.”

    By his compromising attitude Peter confused the separation of Law and Gospel. Paul had to do something about it. He reproved Peter, not to embarrass him, but to conserve the difference between the Gospel which justifies in heaven, and the Law which justifies on earth.

    The right separation between Law and Gospel is very important to know. Christian doctrine is impossible without it. Let all who love and fear God, diligently learn the difference, not only in theory but also in practice.

    When your conscience gets into trouble, say to yourself: “There is a time to die, and a time to live; a time to learn the Law, and a time to unlearn the Law; a time to hear the Gospel, and a time to ignore the Gospel. Let the Law now depart, and let the Gospel enter, for now is the right time to hear the Gospel, and not the Law.” However, when the conflict of conscience is over and external duties must be performed, close your ears to the Gospel, and open them wide to the Law.”

    Martin Luther, Commentary on Galatians

  4. Jean says:

    Correction: The citation in my #3 should be to Galatians 2:14.

  5. Michael says:

    So…I’m going through my news feed and this story on the iPhone X comes up…

    It’s standard fare about people waiting in line…until they get to one of those people who they obviously had no idea who he was…

    Read for yourself…

  6. Josh The Baptist says:


  7. Duane Arnold says:

    Well, that’s two that I knew!

  8. victorious says:

    Ha! I wonder if Rolph was in line somewhere too.

  9. pstrmike says:

    Gotta give Greg credit to wait in line himself instead of having one of his assistants do it for some guy we know who did so at the opening of a Krspy Kreme 😉

  10. Scooter Jones says:

    I’m surprised Greg’s evangelism gift didn’t kick in while standing in line to pay a thousand bucks for the new and latest iPhone.

    You know, he just breaks out with a message about the dangers of materialism, consumerism and what really fills the gap of that God shaped vacuum in all of us, etc 😉

  11. Scooter Jones says:

    So, this past week I decided to refocus on that “random act of kindness” theme. On Friday morning real early while paying for my diesel fuel in Coalinga, CA, there was a black man standing behind me waiting to pay for his coffee. I say, “I’ll also pay for this man’s coffee.” He seemed surprised, however, expressed gratitude.

    This morning I go through the drive through at McDonald’s in my hometown. Order the McMuffin meal with a large coffee. I pull around to pay and the young lady says, “no charge, sir. My manager said to comp you.” Huh? I’ve never been comped at a fast food restaurant in my life!

    I wonder if the Lord was repaying my random act of kindness? 😉

  12. dusty says:

    Good for you scooter, glad you did that act of kindness and got an act of kindness in return. Keep up the good work.

  13. John 20:29 says:

    random acts of kindness? i received one Friday that i guess i’d better remember to pay forward, too… i told the young man that he was an answer to prayer

    if i were Greg L., i’d be so embarrassed at spending that kind of money for a gadget… yes, i know all the reasons why those things are “indispensable.” how else can you rear end someone while texting or T-bone someone because you didn’t see the traffic light change to red?
    maybe he’ll give it to someone who needs it, but can’t find the money to buy one because they put their money in Greg’s offering plate, eh? seriously, may God find a way to redeem this – even if it’s just to clarify the “why” of his purchase….

  14. Anne says:

    I have a iPhone 4s one of my daughters got for free over 3 years ago when adding me to her service. It acts as a phone, camera, web surfer, has all the bells & whistles that keep me from getting lost around town etc etc: I balked at having it, am totally grateful now but could never ever imagine paying hundreds let alone over a grand for one – let alone one on a supposedly non prophet ministry dime. Boggles my mind actually. Then again actually none of my business – especially since no risk of my donations ever being tied to such things ever again.

  15. John 20:29 says:

    Anne, i’m betting Greg paid for it out of his own pocket, which i suspect is lined with pretty big salary dollars…
    those idea that those enormous salaries that have been justified by saying that the guy could bring in even bigger dollars working in the secular world has bothered me for decades… does it bother God? hmmm … not sure how much it bothers Him, but He must be taking note of it

  16. Xenia says:

    I recently got an iPhone 6s for $100 and find that it has been very beneficial as well as very distracting. I had a cheapy smart phone that barely worked and caused much frustration. So this new gadget works like magic, and it seems like magic, with Siri and the wizard. I watch TV shows and movies, chat w/ my friends and family, check email, listen to music, keep track of my commitments, navigate big cities, take pictures, listen to class lectures both live and recorded, order books for said classes, read these books, keep track of Trump’s latest tweets, etc. My favorite app is “Dog Walk” which encourages me to walk my overweight dog. I find all of this to be a little unsettling…

    We visit San Francisco fairly often and we were starting to get lost regularly. That’s why I got the phone. We don’t get lost in SF anymore and can easily locate the closest vegan restaurant during Lent, but all the fascinating and distracting things that come with the ability to navigate…. like I say, unsettling.


    Lord have mercy on the people of Sutherland, Texas. Lord have mercy.

  17. Col46 says:

    @16 – Lord have mercy on the people of Sutherland, Texas. Lord have mercy.


  18. John 20:29 says:

    28 killed so far – joining in praying for the folks in Texas now

  19. pstrmike says:

    Lord have mercy.

  20. John 20:29 says:

    We are experiencing these demented souls – not all jihadists (sp?) – with way more frequency than occurred in my youth… and I have to wonder, just what has changed in society as a whole to foment, to allow some to think, that it is their right to commit mass murders now… ? … adults behaving like animals, like demons

    I hesitate to make this comment because it isn’t my desire to start a gun control debate – not that discussion again, please

  21. Col46 says:

    @20 – “not that discussion again, please” Too late…

  22. John 20:29 says:

    Col46… thing of it is that our problem is not guns – yes people are using guns to kill…

    i fall back on old arguments, i know, when i point out that reckless drivers kill people, but banning cars seems insane.. the idea that we can pass laws to keep people from killing people?

    we already have laws against this… banning guns will have as much success as did, “just say no to drugs” … we’ve developed a mindset that is acting out in crazy killings (with bombs and cars as well as guns, BTW)
    it disturbs me that we are focusing on guns (a simplistic and unrealistic focus IMV) when we have something systemically out of whack in society today that is almost a jungle mentality …
    will we devolve into roaming tribes once more? we will if we can’t turn society from a mindless sense of entitlement and an inability to see that life is not fair or just and never has been – we can strive for liberty and justice for all, but in this world it will never be perfected
    we need to raise children to accept that revenge is not an option and that wisdom is a survival skill … and would to God that His grace and mercy was held up as the prime virtue, not just a good idea for certain religious people

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