Saturday, May 28, 2011

Stand Like a Rock

RINOs, sellouts, big tent republicans. All names for those who have been elected by conservatives because we thought they shared our values, only to have them cave when they get into office. Why does this happen time and time again?

Is it that the party politics, team spirit of it all has corrupted our election process? That would seem to bear a large portion of the blame, but there is another component which bears examination. That component is the word and process of compromise.

Compromise, on it's face, seems like a good thing. It is a useful tool when negotiating in areas of disagreement. Often, in bitter negotiations, a compromise where no one is entirely happy is viewed as a proper solution.

Politicians are often encouraged to compromise in order to get "something" done. An alarming idea at best, since our system was designed to prevent our politicians from doing certain things unless they compromised their principles. Our founders have said over and over again what sort of people we ought to prefer in our elections. People of good character and Christian values. Trustworthy and high minded statesmen. In other words, people who will not compromise on matters of principle. And yet, here we are.

Why was it important to our founders that we elect the best among us to serve in Congress? I submit that it was to be sure that those who served would be those who understood the difference between principle and preference. Thomas Jefferson wrote "It matters of style, swim with the current, in matters of principle, stand like a rock."

Here's why it matters. Compromise in an area of principle is not a negotiation, it is a loss. Let me say that again, compromise in an area of principle equals a LOSS.

We are to elect Congressmen and women who know that matters of principle should never even be in the same room as the bargaining table, much less on the table itself. In our current culture of moral relativity, we seem to have lost the knack for differentiating between principle and preference.

This is one area where being a Christian is of service to a legislator. If he or she has an absolute against which to measure his/her actions and decisions, it is easier to tell which items are items of principle (Like our God given and Constitutionally affirmed rights) and which are matters of preference (like whether to spend allocated monies for one form of defense or another).

We need to elect people based on character and values, not party. Because anyone who is willing to compromise on principle just to keep their party in power is someone who is willing to lose all that makes this nation what it was intended by our founders to be. The freest, most independent nation on Earth. A nation of principled individuals whose understanding of personal responsibility and self determination would set them a cut above those of any nation that allowed their government to do their thinking for them. For too long we have seen our legislators lose, step by incremental step, the principles upon which this nation was founded. This is the battle we are fighting and every individual in this nation of voting age has a duty to vote accordingly.

To those who protest that by abandoning the "two party system" we will give the election to "the other side", so what? If we do not elect people of good character who will not compromise on principles, we are lost anyway. Because those "good, party members" will compromise again and again, until we stop electing them. The choice you offer is between an immediate loss and an incremental one. Again, a vote for the lesser of two evils is still a vote for evil.

"Ye that love the LORD, hate evil: he preserveth the souls of his saints; he delivereth them out of the hand of the wicked." ~ Psalm 97:10

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Usama Dakdok

Join me and my guest Usama Dakdok of The Straight Way on this week's show.

The best and most effective and loving way of countering Islam, in my opinion, is to convert it's followers to Christianity.

If you find that statement offensive, then clearly this is not the blog for you - lol. But if you have questions feel free to call in.

The switchboard doesn't always show me when I have callers, but I'll do my best to let you ask a question, if there's time. As always, the rules are: no profanity and no personal attacks.
(Personal Note: My apologies to Mr. Dakdok for the, now corrected, misspelling of his name.)

"What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee." ~ Psalms 56:3

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Unsigned Concert

Just a quick plug for a local concert. If you like the intro music for my BTR radio show, here is a chance to hear it performed live. This will be a family friendly concert. (No drinkin, no drugs and if there's any foul language, it had best not be in my vicinity.) If you're looking for something to do with your young'uns or just to have a good time hearing some old favorites along with originals performed by some of this areas finest young and young at heart musicians, come on out to Lakeland College on Friday, May 20th at 7:00 pm. You'll be glad you did.

And here's a cover of Ben Fold's "Army" that 3 of the band members ran through while waiting for the other 3 to rehearse back in April.

"And David spake to the chief of the Levites to appoint their brethren to be the singers with instruments of musick, psalteries and harps and cymbals, sounding, by lifting up the voice with joy." ~ 1Chron 15:16

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Time, Mark Gungor and More

My apologies to my regular readers for my lack of posts over the last few weeks. It is not that there has been a dearth of things about which to post, quite the opposite in fact. I would like to be able to say that it was simply too overwhelming to address the many interesting tidbits of the last few weeks.

The truth, however, is that I was seeing entirely too many health professionals. From the doctors to schedule and go through a medical test to look into the issues I have been having with my voice over the past several months, to the dentist for a sudden and unexpected root canal. I have been overwhelmed, but by my own frailties rather than the news of the day.

My week wasn't all challenges and no rewards though. On Tuesday, I was also granted the extraordinary opportunity to sit in on the taping and broadcast of one of my favorite Internet radio shows, The Mark Gungor Show. (Basically, I was listening and heard Pastor Gungor invite fans to send them an e-mail if they would like to sit in on the show and, shrinking violet that I am, I was sending an e-mail within a few minutes of the end of the show.)

Now this is a show that I have found to be both informative and amusing. It also gives me a greater appreciation for my husband and my son. I have often recommended it to listeners of my own program, family and friends alike. It is amusing and honest in dealing with relationships. Some people find it a bit too honest, too funny and much too brutal to fall within their limited understanding and/or prejudiced preconceptions of Christianity.

Let me tell you, it is much funnier when you can watch the co-hosts throwing things at each other and making faces and gestures. I haven't laughed so much in a very long time. My face still hurts.

In addition, Mr. Gungor was gracious enough to treat us to lunch. The demonstration of good manners on display during lunch was reassuring to me, as a mother who has insisted that my son open doors and allow ladies to go first. I don't know why, but seeing men with good manners makes me appreciate the role of men in society so much more than when I see men without them. There is something inherently masculine about men behaving with respect for women. (Also one of the qualities I found most attractive in my own husband while we were dating.)

It says " Here is a confident, stable and trustworthy person." (Which may or may not be true, but that's the impression I have always gleaned from good manners in anyone.) I always enjoy the opportunity to observe couples who love and respect each other in ordinary everyday situations and Mr. and Mrs. Gungor are such a couple, so sitting down to lunch with them was a treat.

It is also always, always a treat to see competent, people working as a closely knit team. I felt very privileged to be allowed to not only observe, but participate a tiny bit in their teamwork for this series of broadcasts.

It was also my honor to be the very first listener/fan to take them up on the offer to sit in on the show. I hope that my behavior and demeanor was such as to provide a positive experience for them as well. While I am sure that over time, they will develop a process for integrating their guest listeners into their routine that is as smooth as is their process for the show, it was fascinating to be the first. In addition to observing the dynamics of a close -knit and professional team, it gave me a glimpse into yet another facet of the scintillatingly beautiful jewel that is God's creation.

I know that I may seem overly positive in my review, and perhaps having such a treat after a week and a half of health challenges will result in a naturally positive view of an experience so filled with laughter(even though there was a reasonable degree of hesitation as there always will be with new people). However, one of God's greatest gifts to us is each other.

Having had many discussions over the past months, especially here, in WI, where there have been such displays of animosity over what is, essentially a difference of basic worldviews, I cannot help but note, once again that we are all infinitely precious to God. Intrinsically valuable for who we are. Every new person is a new opportunity to examine your life through their eyes and gain a new appreciation for it. An opportunity to ask yourself, how would this person see my life? And what might I have done differently if I looked at the world as they do?

I'm not just referring to the Laugh Your Way crew here, but the waitstaff at the restaurant and the other customers as well. The police officer monitoring I-43 as I traveled up to Green Bay, the friendly service station attendant at the gas station where I stopped to stretch my legs. (I'm not as young as I used to be-car rides of an hour or more leave me stiff and sore these days. Stretching is good.)

Maybe it's just that I need to get out more. I don't resent the fact that my car is most often with my son, but I do miss being around people. It's a relatively short term sacrifice to make as he goes through college and gets started on his own life. And really, when I think about how much more I appreciate the opportunities, to meet new people when the opportunity arises, it's a blessing too. No one is perfect but that's no reason that we cant, in the words of Pastor Gungor and the Laugh Your Way to a Better Marriage team, "just be nice to each other."

"And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:

And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these." ~ Mark 12:29-31