Feb 19, 2017

Luke 16:14-17 “The Pharisees, who were lovers of money, heard all these things, and they ridiculed him. And he said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God.  “The Law and the Prophets were until John; since then the good news of the kingdom of God is preached, and everyone forces his way into it.  But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one dot of the Law to become void.”  ESV

What did the Pharisees here that made them so angry, jealous and petty?

They heard Jesus teach about humility, service, devotion, commitment, giving, caring, loving, yielding, stewardship, faithfulness and obedience to the Kingdom of God.

Shame on Him for teaching them to Love God and Love others

 The tried to justify their selfish, arrogant behavior by ridiculing the Son of God.

I don’t think that will go over very well.

Bullying to get your way is NO WAY to make a point

If Jesus identifies our bad behavior and we feel ashamed REMEMBER that He has don’t this to CORRECT behavior and NOT TO HARM us.

The purpose of the Law is to show us our need for Jesus, not to condemn us.  The Law shows us our transgressions against God and against our fellow man.  The Law should lead us to repentance.

We can never JUSTIFY ourselves before anyone, much less the Only One who can redeem us and justify us.

He knows the REAL US; not the FAKE US we allow the world to see and know.

Forces: force, to crowd oneself, to be seized, press suffer violence.  NLT – Eager              KJV – Presseth into

AMP – “and everyone strives violently to go in [would force his own way rather than God’s way into it]

We want the Good News without the Faith and Obedience

We want to go into God’s Kingdom on OUR TERMS

OUR WAY     OUR TIME     “JUST AS WE ARE”

We want the benefits without the costs

We don’t even want to count the cost

We are REBELS

We rebel against god’s Word

We rebel against God’s Will

We rebel against God

We have proved our rebellion all the way back to the garden.

This is a rebellion we will NEVER win

We are PARASITES

We want to pull all we want from the well

We want to LATCH ON and get all we can get

Just like the Temple Elite of Christ’s Day

We never want to serve, obey or trust

We want God to be a vending machine that responds at our demand and we are more than willing to kick, rattle and complain if we do not get our way.

The Law matters.  The Law shows us our need for God.

The 10 Commandments matter.  In our lives, in the life of our country.

We do not dispose of them, we embrace them and see how they point us to love God and others better.

If we love God we will obey His Commands.

John 14:15 “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.”

  • We forget that our obedience is a way to say “Thank You” to the One who saved us.
  • We forget that we are ill equipped to ridicule or argue with God
  • We forget that our trust is a way to say “We Believe” to the One who provides and protects us
  • We forget that our love expressed is one way we say we are connected to the One who is Love.

Marriage          Feb 26, 2017

Luke 16:18 “Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.”   ESV

Today we will look at marriage.  But before we dig into this text let’s look at the bigger picture.

  1. In the Beginning
    1. Genesis 2:18-25 “Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for So out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the heavens and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. And whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name. The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper fit for him. So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh.  And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man.  Then the man said, “This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.” Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.  And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.”  ESV
      1. God knew that men NEEDED a women
        1. We would not survive as a species
        2. We would not survive as people
        3. WE NEED OUR WIVES
      2. Man was formed from dirt
  • Woman was formed from Bone
    1. You decide which is stronger
  1. God said that the Man and Woman shall live together
    1. Note Man and Woman
    2. God designed marriage to be between a man and a woman.
  2. God united Adam and Eve in marriage LONG before there were any preachers, judges or ship captains available.
    1. The act of the two becoming one flesh WAS the union of marriage.
  3. Nakedness WITHOUT shame is reserved for a couple united in marriage
    1. NO ONE ELSE!
    2. That would be ADULTRY
      1. The physical act of adultery is SIN
      2. The cultivation of adultery is SIN
      3. Matthew 5:27-28 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”  ESV
    3. Marriage was always to be defined as a LIFETIME commitment
      1. Not for a set amount of time
      2. Not until it gets tough
      3. Not until you fall in lust with someone else
        1. LIFETIME
      4. What breaks the covenant bounds of marriage
          1. Romans 7:2-3 “Thus a married woman is bound by law to her husband while he lives, but if her husband dies she is released from the law of marriage. Accordingly, she will be called an adulteress if she lives with another man while her husband is alive. But if her husband dies, she is free from that law, and if she marries another man she is not an adulteress.” ESV
        1. Adultery
          1. They physical act
          2. The cultivation
  • The loving/lusting of anyone else EXCEPT GOD more than your spouse
  1. Addiction
    1. Same problem as adultery except instead of a person of the opposite sex your heart becomes devoted to a drug or alcohol.
    2. Family resources are stripped away in order to supply the desired FIX of the addict
  • If your lustful intent is directed at a thing or substance at the cost of your relationship with your wife or family the love covenant is broken
  1. Both adultery and addiction often fester into a third reason:
  2. Abuse
    1. We are commanded to love and submit one to another
      1. Abuse breaks the love covenant
      2. God does not expect you to be belittled, beaten or buried
        1. There is no love there
        2. Colossians 3:18-19 “Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. Husbands, love your wives, and do not be harsh with them.”   ESV
      3. All of these place the fleshly desires and pride of one person ahead of their spouse and their children
        1. Love NEVER demands its own way
        2. If supporting your habit for another person or substance leaves your family hungry and homeless YOU HAVE BROKEN YOUR MARRIAGE COVENANT
      4. What about getting remarried
        1. If your spouse dies you are free to be biblically remarried
        2. If your unbelieving spouse leaves you are free to be biblically remarried
        3. 1 Corinthians 7:12-16 “To the rest I say (I, not the Lord) that if any brother has a wife who is an unbeliever, and she consents to live with him, he should not divorce her. If any woman has a husband who is an unbeliever, and he consents to live with her, she should not divorce him.  For the unbelieving husband is made holy because of his wife, and the unbelieving wife is made holy because of her husband. Otherwise your children would be unclean, but as it is, they are holy.  But if the unbelieving partner separates, let it be so. In such cases the brother or sister is not enslaved. God has called you to peace.  Wife, how do you know whether you will save your husband? Husband, how do you know whether you will save your wife?”   ESV
        4. Note a time of serious repentance and dealing with God should be required to deal with any sin that may have occurred.
        1. Other than that, if your spouse is still breathing air you remain bound together.
        2. God’s Standards are higher than ours
      5. Is a divorce REQUIRED if adultery, addiction, abuse has occurred
        1. No
        2. But know it will take repentance to God, a new level of openness, a treatment program, or other corrective actions before the marriage may begin to become “normal”
          1. The reality is that FULL trust may never return
          2. Doubts and questions will remain
        3. There is much hard work to do
      6. Marriage is to be held in honor among all
        1. God will judge those who do not
      7. Marriage is supposed to be a human relationship that mirrors our relationship with God
        1. Love
        2. Grace
        3. Mercy
        4. Patience
        5. Permanence
        6. Helpful
        7. Protecting
        8. Nurturing

Marriage          May 12, 2017

Luke 16:18 “Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.”   ESV

Today we will look at marriage.  But before we dig into this text let’s look at the bigger picture.

  1. Marriage was always to be defined as a LIFETIME commitment
    1. Not for a set amount of time
    2. Not until it gets tough
    3. Not until you fall in lust with someone else
      1. LIFETIME
  2. We need to understand what real love is before we commit to another person for a lifetime
    1. Love is more than what we call “chemical” with is more lust than love
    2. Love is more than “convenience” because someone is close and you have similar interests
    3. LOVE IS COMMITMENT
    4. Ephesians 5:25-33 “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body.  “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”  This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church.  However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.” ESV

1 Corinthians 13:4-8 “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant  or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.  Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.  Love never ends.” ESV

It is FAR PAST TIME we begin to put THESE attributes INTO our relationships

  1. What breaks the covenant bounds of marriage
      1. Romans 7:2-3 “Thus a married woman is bound by law to her husband while he lives, but if her husband dies she is released from the law of marriage. Accordingly, she will be called an adulteress if she lives with another man while her husband is alive. But if her husband dies, she is free from that law, and if she marries another man she is not an adulteress.” ESV
    1. SIN
      1. Adultery
        1. They physical act
        2. The cultivation
        3. The loving/lusting of anyone else EXCEPT GOD more than your spouse
      2. Addiction
        1. Same problem as adultery except instead of a person of the opposite sex your heart becomes devoted to a drug or alcohol.
        2. Family resources are stripped away in order to supply the desired FIX of the addict
        3. If your lustful intent is directed at a thing or substance at the cost of your relationship with your wife or family the love covenant is broken
  • Both adultery and addiction often fester into a third reason:
  1. Abuse
    1. We are commanded to love and submit one to another
      1. Abuse breaks the love covenant
      2. God does not expect you to be belittled, beaten or buried
        1. There is no love there
        2. Colossians 3:18-19 “Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. Husbands, love your wives, and do not be harsh with them.”   ESV
      3. All of these place the fleshly desires and pride of one person ahead of their spouse and their children
        1. Love NEVER demands its own way
        2. If supporting your habit for another person or substance leaves your family hungry and homeless YOU HAVE BROKEN YOUR MARRIAGE COVENANT
      4. What about getting remarried
        1. If your spouse dies you are free to be biblically remarried
        2. Other than that, if your spouse is still breathing air you remain bound together.
        3. God’s Standards are higher than ours
      5. Marriage is to be held in honor among all
        1. God will judge those who do not
      6. Marriage is supposed to be a human relationship that mirrors our relationship with God
        1. Love
        2. Grace
        3. Mercy
        4. Patience
        5. Permanence
        6. Helpful
        7. Protecting
        8. Nurturing

Hades Secret Desire                Luke 16:19 – 31          March 19, 2017

  1. The rich man eats and dresses well
    1. He thought he had life all figured out
    2. Didn’t need anything more than his money
  2. The poor man would be happy to be fed like a dog
    1. Had nothing – His most valuable thing was his faith
  3. Rich or Poor – we will all find our human experience coming to an end sometime
    1. We don’t know when
    2. We usually don’t know how
    3. But we are only here for a short time, THEN eternity
  4. IN HEAVEN:
    1. You will find healing and peace
    2. You will find love and deep relationships
    3. Not much is said about Heaven here because it is not the focus of this parable
  5. IN HELL:
    1. You will KNOW you messed up
      1. Woke to TRUE TERROR
      2. Any relationship is far away
        1. No friends in sight
        2. No parties
        3. Just pain, anxiety, loneliness – total anguish
  • Any compassion is far away
    1. Complete and total separation from God
    2. Any grace and mercy is FAR REMOVED
  1. You will experience ANGUISH and PAIN far greater than you could ever imaging
    1. Torment and Anguish from the eternal flame
    2. Mark 9:47-49 “And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into hell, ‘where their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched.” ESV
  • Not even a vapor from a tiny drop of water to ease your burnt lips and all consuming thirst.
  1. You will KNOW that it is TOO LATE to change your FATE and ETERNITY
    1. Great Chasm is FIXED
    2. NONE may cross
    3. Your FATE is sealed
  2. Hebrews 9:27-28 “And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appears a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.” ESV
    1. Here is HADES SECRET DESIRE
      1. You will suddenly become very EVANGELISTIC
      2. You will WANT others to hear the Gospel
  • You will WANT someone, ANYONE go and tell
  1. All your “Good Excuses” gone only REALITY remains
  2. Others hearing the Word of God is suddenly Number one on your agenda
  3. Hoping upon hope that they may be spared the SAME FATE as you
    1. They have already heard and turned away
  4. The time to find God’s Redemption is NOW!
    1. Later is not guaranteed
    2. There is one way…and ONLY One way to escape the torment of hades flame:
      1. By GRACE alone through FAITH alone in CHRIST alone!
    3. Ephesians 2:8-10 “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” ESV
  5. The time to SHARE THE GOSPEL is NOW!
    1. Later is not guaranteed
    2. Acts 1:8 “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” ESV

Who is it?   Luke 22:7 – 23    Lord’s Supper

Luke 22:7-23 “Then came the day of Unleavened Bread, on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed.  So Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, “Go and prepare the Passover for us, that we may eat it.”  They said to him, “Where will you have us prepare it?”  He said to them, “Behold, when you have entered the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him into the house that he enters and tell the master of the house, ‘The Teacher says to you, Where is the guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’   And he will show you a large upper room furnished; prepare it there.”  And they went and found it just as he had told them, and they prepared the Passover.”    And when the hour came, he reclined at table, and the apostles with him. And he said to them, “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer.  For I tell you I will not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.”  And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves.  For I tell you that from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.”   And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.”  And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood. But behold, the hand of him who betrays me is with me on the table.   For the Son of Man goes as it has been determined, but woe to that man by whom he is betrayed!”  And they began to question one another, which of them it could be who was going to do this.”   ESV

  1. God knows what is needed BEFORE you know
    1. God knows who He needs to be and where they need to be and what time they need to be there and what they need to be carrying and where they need to be going to serve Him and His purposes.
    2. “For such a time as this”
  2. God may never be early, but He is never late
    1. When the Hour came, He reclined at the table
  3. God desires to spend time with His people
    1. “I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you I will not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” 
  4. God knows the truth of our hearts
    1. No matter how hard we try to hide that truth
    2. Maybe even before we know that truth
      1. Even the disciples questioned themselves
      2. They did not know who He was talking about
        1. Jesus knew
        2. Today we know who the sinners are that will gather around God’s Table to Observe the Ordinance of the Lord’s Supper
          1. So, who is it?
          2. Is it you?
          3. Is it me?
          4. Is it them?
            1. Yes
  • We are all sinners who fall short of the Glory of God
  1. We are all sinners in need of repentance
  1. Woe to the man by whom He is betrayed
    1. We must repent before we receive the Lord’s Supper
    2. Examine ourselves and, with a repentant heart, ask God’s forgiveness and cleansing.
    3. 1 Corinthians 11:27-32 “Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord. Let a person examine himself, then, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself. That is why many of you are weak and ill, and some have died. But if we judged ourselves truly, we would not be judged. But when we are judged by the Lord, we are disciplined so that we may not be condemned along with the world.” ESV

Stewardship/Giving/Managing God’s Stuff        Luke 16:1 – 15

Average cost of a Super Bowl ticket this year is $5,000.  Add flights, hotels, food, souvenirs and other expenses we see that a HERD of money will be spent by Super Bowl Attendees.

NGR Stadium hold 72.220 people X $5,000 = $361 MILLION Dollars in ticket sales  – PLUS the other stuff (food, souvenirs, hotels, travel, etc)

And that is just the ones who will be in actual attendance.

More than 100 Million are expected to watch the game on TV and online and spend money on jerseys, food, snacks, drinks, new bigger screen TV’s, etc.

1.23 BILLION Hot Wings  |   14,500 TONS of chips  | 8 MILLION pounds of Guacamole  |  100 Million cases of beverages

A 30 Second Super Bowl Ad cost 5 Million Dollars and up YET 80% of these commercials DO NOT boost sales or purchase intent.

140,000 fans from out of town traveling to Houston requiring 1,300 extra airplane flights and 1,000 NEW hotel rooms

Overall it is estimated that this year’s Super Bowl spending will top last year’s 15.5 BILLION

Not questioning where you spend your money.

Point here is that a BUNCH of people love football more than they love their money.

They are putting their money where their passion points them…Football.  60 minutes of play.

They have scrimped, saved, work extra jobs, borrowed  (heavily since a bunch of this is credit card debt) to fund their desire to attend a football game.

Maybe they are not the shrewdest manager of their money…but they had a great $7,500 afternoon watching a game in Houston.…and they still must explain the credit card bill, empty savings account or new loan payment to their spouse.

  • How much MORE do you love God?
  • How much more are you managing and saving God’s Money you have stewardship over for God’s purposes?
  • Are you being a shrewd manager of God resources or are you trying to cheat Him?
  1. What is your greatest love and passion in life?
    1. How invested are you in your God given passion?
  2. Are you wasting the resources/possessions God has given you?
    1. Why are you entrusted to manage God’s resources?
      1. For God
      2. For His purpose
      3. To give Him the increase
  1. One day there will be an accounting of what you have done with the life God entrusted you with
    1. Many will be held to account for their frivolous spending and behavior this weekend later.
      1. When the bills start rolling in and their spouses read how much money went for what….and when the bills can’t be paid.
    2. We also will be held to account by OUR KING!
  2. You will not be able to “Cook the Books” or use other people to make you look better than you really have been.
    1. God Knows the truth
    2. God keeps His own Books
    3. You CANNOT fake faithfulness with God
  3. You will serve only one master
    1. God
    2. NOT GOD – Self/money/anything and everything else
  4. Do you love God or do you love money?
    1. Knowing that the money/resources you have are from Him
    2. Why would we love the created over the Creator?
      1. Is money your false God?
    3. What are you holding back from God?
      1. 50% 20%                 100%
      2. God asks for a portion to be given back in faith with joy
        1. And you hold back a percentage of a portion?
      3. How well are you managing God’s Portion?
      4. How well are you managing what God has given you?

A hard look at today’s realities from the dismayed eyes of a veteran.

This is a “word puke” written hard and fast, so please don’t correct my spelling, grammar or writing process. ***I have added a little to this and corrected a few spelling/grammar errors, but this is still very rough****

WARNING!  This is a hard look at some hard issues.  This may offend some, I am ok with that, you are allowed to read it or not read it and are free to be offended.  It is your right.

I am a United States Air Force Veteran.  I say that not to solicit your words of appreciation, but to admit that today I wonder if our service was worth the effort.

From before the very foundation of our country young men and women of character, bravery and valor have answered their countries call to fight for freedom, democracy and the American way.  This call many of us answered freely, volunteering to serve; while others answered the call through the military draft system.

All served.  Many did not return to their home, spilling their blood on foreign soil.

When we entered military service each and every one of us swore an oath to the country we love and serve.

“I, Charles Alderman, do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservations or purpose of evasion; So help me God.”

The brave folks who swore this oath were willing to fight, to bleed and to die for our country, defending the constitution that binds us all together as the United States of America.

These men and women were mostly in their teens and early twenties, wet behind the ears and without really knowing who they were and what was possible.

These youths were the ones who fought WW1, WW2, the Korean Conflict, the Vietnam War, Iraq, Afghanistan and countless other wars, battles and conflicts.

They fought on beaches, in jungles, in forests, on mountains and in the sand.  They fought in the air, the sea, on the land and both on and under the seas.

They left families and communities behind to be shipped off to faraway lands of strange languages, customs and enemies.

They left their homes and comforts for tents, barracks and trenches.

The placed themselves in harm’s way for the country that had blessed them so much.

It is often said that the men and women of our armed services do not go to war to kill an enemy, but so the enemy will not go to their homes to kill their loved ones.

They do not fight to kill the enemy in front of them, but serve their country and the loved ones they left behind.

Tonight I wonder if it is all worthwhile as the legacy of the American veteran is looked upon with such hate and disdain by many of the very countrymen we served.

Today’s youth seem to have little respect for their country or our constitution.  The actions by many “Americans” over the past few years makes me wonder if the next great enemy of our Constitutional Republic will rise from within.

Actors, musicians and professional athletes use their platform to disrespect the military, the veteran and their country.

There are violent and destructive protests over an American Election.  This is absolutely contrary to the American Traditions and Laws.

Where young men and women were once true patriots, today they burn out flag, defecate on our streets and bring chaos to our cities.

Where we were once fair minded and accepting of others and when things did not go our way, today we cry like little babies and throw temper tantrums like toddlers.

We served for your freedom.  Do not disrespect our service by disrespecting our flag, our constitution or those who serve.

Grow up.  Mature.  Learn to ADULT! Stop being babies.

Maturity is more than a plot on an age progression chart.

I was young once and understand what it is to operate on zeal, hormones and raw emotions.  The truth is that the energy and impulsiveness of youth is a great thing for our country!  The problem comes when it is not tempered by responsibility, faith and wisdom; this is when undirected energy becomes destructive.

The wisdom of experience is a wonderful teacher.  The wisdom of failures and mistakes is a harsher teacher but a great educator.

So many in our world today think they know everything but have not truly experienced life enough to realize how little we really know.  This may be a reality of age or by living in a protected bubble with exposure to only one set of ideals or beliefs, but no real look at different viewpoints.

The U.S. service member is plucked out of their bubble in their youth, placed in a new reality with a large group of others from different areas, lifestyles, attitudes, religions and temperaments; all of who are just as freaked out by the sudden change.

They become a unit, a team, a fighting force and closer than brothers.  They learn, grow and mature together, quickly.  They develop trust in each other because in battle they are all they have.  They depend on their team mates to keep them alive.

Veterans have been placed in dangerous situations where maturity, responsibility and quick, logical thought are necessary to stay alive and fulfill their missions.  Experience comes at a fast pace and lessons are engrained on their hearts.   We know what it is to take dangerous actions and have seen first-hand the consequences of war.

If you continue to bring battles to our street and engage our law enforcement officers with violence you may force some grizzled old veterans to follow their oath to our country and take action.  You may force a young officer to act is ways they had prayed they would never have to act in order to save their life and the lives of those they are sworn to protect.

Perhaps the first action we should take is to introduce a bunch of adult babies to the serious side of our belts and bring some discipline and correction into their lives.

Perhaps we should actually hold people to account for their behavior.

Maybe we should stop giving everybody trophy’s except the champions and allow our teachers to use their red pens and give students the grades they actually earn. The fruit of hard work should be encouraged.

Maybe we should allow our kids the kindness of failure.  Then teach them how to deal with failure constructively, learning to communicate and cope with the ups and downs of life.

Then teach them the history of their country and the constitution.

Here are a few of your first lessons:

  1. You are constitutionally guaranteed to be offended.
    1. Deal with it.
    2. There are no safe spaces.
      1. In today’s world danger seems to lurk around every nook and cranny seeking ways to bring its evil to bear on our world.
    3. You are tougher than you think!
      1. You don’t have to let the words of others anger or damage you
        1. The only way the words or actions of others can harm you or effect your life is if you allow them to make an impact.
      2. If you insist on being a dainty butterfly then you are in for a rough ride.
        1. A butterfly is at the mercy of a strong wind
        2. A snowflake cannot take any heat.
      3. Outside of college/educational systems your cry for “safe spaces” or insistence on a world or workplace free from conflict will probably get you unemployed quickly
  2. Your employer does not care if you feel offended or the president elect is scary.
    1. Your employer cares that you get your work done, earn the wages you are being paid to get your work done and help the company be successful.
    2. When you are no longer profitable for their venture you will be relieved of duty and terminated
    3. When you are gone you will be quickly replaced and the new person will be accepted into the fold; just like you were.
  3. When someone’s words of correction, wisdom and guidance make you feel bad it is called your conscience.
    1. Follow it! Change your direction.
    2. You are not being “triggered” you are being given a chance to be a better person
    3. We need instruction, correction and wisdom. These are part of our maturing process.
  4. We are a country of 350 million individuals from different states, countries, economic realities, races, colors, creeds, religions, backgrounds, tragedies and triumphs.
    1. We are a collection of different people
    2. We will not all get along
    3. We do not have to be the same
    4. I am not required to upturn my life to make you happy; and neither are you.
    5. If you have a different faith and religious practice than I do then don’t join my church. But do not restrict my constitutional right to freedom of religion and my religious beliefs and practices.
    6. If you do not like guns then don’t buy one! But do not infringe my constitutional right to own them and bear them
    7. If you do not like what I am saying then walk away. But do not infringe my freedom of speech.
    8. If you don’t like a certain person, group or corporation then don’t join them. But do not infringe upon their right to gather together.
    9. If you do not like the results of an election then work hard to raise up the candidates you prefer and get them elected in the next cycle.
      1. Don’t burn communities, colleges or our country down.
    10. Give others the right to be who they are and expect them to do the same for you.
  5. Never trust just one source of information.
    1. Learn from many sources and ALWAYS ask questions and seek wisdom
    2. Understand that most of what you hear and read from the free press is biased.
    3. The internet is full of lies
      1. Some news stories are actually satire but written so well some folks believe them
      2. Some are just lies written to change a narrative or create division
      3. Some are just spun, rooted in truth but twisted to fit an ideal or political purpose.
      4. Some are true but hard to believe
    4. Go and learn things.
  6. Learn to love the country that is blessing you
    1. The USA might not be perfect but we are the best country and system of government in our world today!
    2. Respect the gift you are given
    3. Be a patriot.
      1. There is a difference between being patriotic and being a true patriot.
      2. The patriot will offer their wealth, time and life for this country.
    4. You can always ask a veteran what it is like in the Middle East or how Hitler treated his own countrymen to see if you would like to move.
    5. The USA is very tolerant of most, if not all lifestyles. Lifestyles that other countries would bring beatings, imprisonment or death.
    6. We have a great life here; learn to love and appreciate what you have.
    7. Be part of building our country, not tearing it down.
  7. We are a tolerant people
    1. We may struggle with lifestyles and activities we find socially or religiously wrong, but are willing to tolerate this behavior because of the freedoms we all have.
    2. We may absolutely disagree with you, your ideals, your politics or your lifestyle. That is a right we have, as do you about our choices.
    3. What binds us together is not uniformity, it is a Constitution that guarantees our right to be different.
    4. We know that an orchestra sounds best when every instrument plays their part in harmony; not when everyone plays the same note at the same time.
    5. What is hard to tolerate is people who take and take then disrespect the gift and the givers. Parasites are most usually users and destroyers that do little to build their host.
    6. Forrest Gump said “Stupid is as stupid does.” Don’t be stupid.
    7. Be constructive with your criticism and approach to conflict resolution.
  8. BUCK UP!
    1. Stop being a baby
    2. You will not always win
    3. Your candidate didn’t win? Neither did mine, didn’t even make the final big show.
      1. We have a Constitutionally elected President
        1. Whether you voted for him or not, he is your president
        2. Respect the position
        3. Respect the office
      2. Half the possible voters – did not vote.
      3. The half that did was pretty much evenly divided…. A few percent difference
    4. The system plays out and we have what we have.
      1. Accept the results
      2. Stop calling half of your country ignorant haters just because they didn’t agree with you.
      3. Look for ways to serve to make America better.
    5. Love your country
      1. You cannot love your country as you seek to destroy its Constitution
      2. You cannot love your country by demanding your own way
      3. You cannot love your country by ignoring the voices of others
      4. You cannot love your country by burning it down
      5. You can love your country by listening, helping, giving
      6. You can love your country and peaceably gather and protest
      7. You can love your country by serving in elected office
      8. You can love your country by working to make things better
      9. You can love your country by following our Constitution and laws
      10. You can love your country by being a patriot
    6. Life is tough, tougher if you are stupid. Don.t be stupid
    7. You are responsible for you
      1. You are the first person responsible for your education, safety, finances, food and every other thing you will need in life.
      2. Not your parents
      3. Not your professors
      4. Not your government
      5. You are responsible for your actions
        1. Not the mob
        2. Not the organizer
        3. Not the inciter
          1. You
          2. Your choices matter
          3. Your choices will guide your life
          4. Your choices will guide your community
      6. Your success in life depends on how hard you will work at being successful.
        1. I am not responsible for you.
        2. If you want something work hard and earn it

Start with those, then grow into the American Citizen you should be for your country and you to prosper.

The American Veteran loved you and this country enough to write a blank check for everything we have, up to and including our very lives…. for you.

PLEASE, stop making veterans regret their service by your behavior.

Learn to Appreciate.

Learn to Respect.

Learn to Love.