Month: November 2014

“Everyone Agrees with the Gospel, They Just Don’t Know It!”

2004 vacation 095Donald Southerland was recently interviewed on Good Morning America about his role as President Snow in The Hunger Games movie series. When asked about his desire to play the role he said, “I asked for it”. He asked for the role in the franchise because “I wanted to end my life being part of something that I thought would maybe catalyze and revolutionize young people because they have been so dormant. This election, it was the lowest voter representation in 72 years. Young people have to get out, you have to get out and change things, you really do. It’s up to you. We’ve wrecked this world and if you’re gonna fix it, you’ve gotta do it now.”

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His statement that “We’ve wrecked this world” was validation of the message that followers of Jesus Christ have been saying since the church’s inception. We live in a fallen, broken world that needs fixing, healing and restoration. While I applaud Mr. Sutherland’s call for the young generation to fix what we’ve wrecked I have to say that this is nothing new. The cultural revolution of the 1960’s was an attempt to accomplish the same objective as was so well illustrated by the 1967 “Summer of Love” phenomenon. The problem is that while a call for everyone to love one another was delivered, it was done so without the divine power of unconditional or agape love. The love that was being called for was a conditional love and therefore fell short of realizing the transformative result that was desired.

Jesus has the answers, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. Jesus also said, “Do to others what you would have them do to you”. Jesus has the answer and Jesus is the answer.

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My Kingdom for Non-Biased News!

2004 vacation 095While recent videos depicting Muslim Street Patrols attempting to enforce Sharia Law in East London, UK disturbed me I decided that it would be prudent to investigate further before forming an opinion.

The threat of a movement bent on imposing Sharia Law in western nations, particularly the UK and the US appears to be real but to what degree? The majority of Muslims living in the west seem to be peaceful people who enjoy the freedom of religion guaranteed by the US Constitution and the British Human Rights Act. In my experience they are willing to live by the law of the land and accept the rights of others to worship according to their own beliefs and traditions.

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The more I researched, the more I discovered that completely unbiased information on this issue is about as common as the proverbial needle in the haystack. Conservatives highlight instances within the US involving court cases that factor in Sharia Law when the litigants are Muslim and from Islamic nations. Liberals are quick to downplay the same instances as anomalies and nothing more than fuel to feed the fires of unwarranted fear.

Further investigation begged questions as to whether or not such decisions have contradicted US law or not. Navigating the complexities of Constitutional Law is a daunting task, as provisions exist allowing for the enforcement of contracts and obligations established in other nations according to foreign laws.

Attempts in some states – most notably Alabama and Oklahoma – to implement state constitutional amendments prohibiting any foreign law to be factored into US court cases have produced a confusing quagmire of complexity that could actually conflict with the US Constitution.

Any aspect of Sharia Law that conflicts with the US Constitution should not be considered regardless of whom the litigants or defendants might be. If I were arrested in Iran for violating Iranian (Sharia) law what is the likelihood that I would be afforded a trial based on US Law?

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Groups advocating the implementation of Sharia Law in the west are small. However, as I considered that fact, I remembered a question I asked my mom and dad when I was young. My parents were young adults in the late 1930’s and early 1940’s so I asked them what they had thought of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi’s before the invasions of Europe and Africa began.

They’re response was telling.  “We thought that he was a funny little man with a funny mustache on the other side of the ocean and that the brown-shirts were insignificant gangs of street thugs.”

Everyone should be free to sleep at night – even if it is with one eye open. If someone, anyone would provide an accurate and comprehensive assessment of this complicated issue then perhaps we could sleep with both eyes closed.

 

MOVIE PROMO: The Wedding Ringer

I am re-blogging my son’s post. I enjoy reading him. Am I biased? Of course, but I also think that he is a good writer.

Whalen's Whimsical Words

Recently I had the pleasure of attending a movie promotion for the film The Wedding Ringer, currently scheduled for wide release on January 16th.

Quick spoiler-free synopsis:
The Wedding Ringer stars one of my current favorite actors Josh Gad (seriously on the way home from the movie I played the “Book of Mormon” soundtrack and arriving home put on Frozen) as a man with a problem; namely having a stunningly beautiful fiancée played by Big Bang Theory’s Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting.

Okay, so marrying a hot woman isn’t the real problem. The real problem is that Doug Harris (Gad) has realized he has no particularly close friends on whom to call to be his best man. In an act of desperation, he seeks the help of a professional best man played by Kevin Hart. We spend the majority of the movie learning just what’s involved in the creation of a fictionalized best…

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“Love is…”

“Love is patient, love is kind. human-kindness-11

It does not envy,

it does not boast,  it is not proud.

It is not rude, it is not self-seeking,

It is not easily angered,

It keeps no record of wrongs.

Love does not delight in evil but…

Rejoices with the truth.

Love always protects,

Always trusts,

Always hopes,

Always perseveres.

Love never fails.”