Friday, July 31, 2015

Islam, Anti-Christ, and Prayer

The other day, I received this in my email.  Please read through it and I will comment at the end.

I know there are some of you that are Democrat and love Obama, but this is for Christians first, politics later.   I do pray that it doesn't offend anybody with the truth of the message, but it has to be sent. If you love your Lord first and your politics later, then you will appreciate this message. If you don't, I'm sorry I judged you wrong. When we get 100,000,000, that's one hundred million willing Christians to BOND together, voice their concerns and vote, we can take back America with God's help.   Become one of the One hundred million... Then let's get 200 million. It can be done just by sending this email to your friends.   Do the math. It only takes a single willing heart and a fed up SOUL. 
God Bless America and Shine your light on Her!   In 1952 President Truman Established one day a year as a "National Day of Prayer."   
In 1988 President Reagan Designated the first Thursday in May of each year as The National Day of Prayer.   
In June 2007 (then) Presidential Candidate BarackObama Declared that the USA "Was no longer a Christian nation.   
In 2009 President Obama Canceled the 21st annual National Day of Prayer ceremony at the White House under the ruse of "not wanting to offend anyone." HOWEVER... On September 25, 2009 From 4 AM until 7 PM, A National Day of Prayer FOR THE MUSLIM RELIGION Was Held on Capitol Hill, inside the White House. There were over 50,000 Muslims In D.C. that day. PRESIDENT OBAMA PRAYS WITH THE MUSLIMS! I guess it doesn't matter if "Christians" were offended by this event - We obviously don't count as "anyone" anymore.   Now President Obama is encouraging schools to teach the Quran for extra credit, while at the same time, they cannot even talk about the Bible, God, pray, or salute the American Flag. The direction this country is headed should strike fear in the heart of every Christian  especially knowing that the Muslim religion believes that if Christians cannot be converted, they should be annihilated.  
Send this to ten people, or even one hundred and ten!   And, send it the person who Sent it to you!. . To let them know that indeed, it was sent out to many more.

Okay, so that is the email I got.  First, let me say I really hate anything that resembles a chain letter. So, when someone sends me something that says "pass this on," I usually don't, just on principle. If you want to paste it into an email or put it on your blog or Facebook, feel free, but doing so won't prove your love of God or Country and not doing it won't reveal you as a Summer Patriot either. 

Regardless of the "chain-letter" feel, this one called attention to something that I think warrants widespread attention, especially from Christians.  And, since this blog is primarily focused on the collision space between God and Government, then this seemed appropriate.

Although it has consistently been soft-pedaled by the mainstream media, Obama publicly admitted in his books that he will stand with the Muslims.  Add to that a couple of other things in his resume.  
    1) During his first campaign I was watching one of his interviews where he referred to Islam as "my faith." Then he quickly backpedaled, saying "their faith", and the reporter totally let it slide. 
    2) In his own books Obama said he would stand with Islam. 
    2) For more than 20 years he claimed his spiritual guide was the Reverend Jeremiah Wright who takes the framework for his beliefs and preaching from "Liberation  Theology" which, if you didn't know, was created by the KGB as a means to get "Christian" ministers to preach the tenets of communism and anti-Americanism.

So, what we have in our current President of the United States is a Muslim who publicly embraces a theology that has it origins in the Communist Manifesto, which preaches that religion is nothing more or less than a means to control the masses ("... religion is the opiate of the masses.").

Some would be dismissive of all this and say, what does it matter if he is Muslim or not?  Well, to everyone who is not Muslim this is a really, really big deal, because it will ultimately determine if they live or die, when he gets his way.  You may think I am being melodramatic here, but it really is that serious.

Why would I say it is a matter of life and death?  Because, according to the teachings of "the religion of peace" anyone who is not a Muslim, a Christian or a Jew has the choice of either converting to Islam or being killed.  And Christians and Jews, if they want to live, get to pay an annual tax for the privilege of not being killed.  In Islam, there are exactly three categories of people: 1) Muslims 2) Infidels (Jews and Christians) and 3) Pagans.  And the Pagans are to be killed if they won't convert to Islam.  Now, do you understand why Pakistan and Bangladesh had to be carved out of India into separate countries and maintain a pretty hostile relationship with India?  It is because both Pakistan and Bangladesh are predominantly Muslim populations while India is predominantly "pagan."  Having pagans ruling over Muslims would be utterly intolerable, and produced violent results.

Now, one more point is worthy of mention here.  Many don't realize it, but Islam is anti-Christ.

Hold on!  Don't go all wild-eyed on me here.  Do you really know what that term means?

Most Christians get all wrapped up in the Book of the Revelation of Saint John (aka Revelations) and talk about "The Anti-Christ."  But they don't really even know what the phrase anti-Christ means.  They assume it means something like opposite-of-Christ.  You know, like in Star Trek where you have matter and anti-matter.  But, that isn't really what the term means.

What anti-Christ means is someone who says that Jesus of Nazareth was not the the Christ, meaning that they deny that he is the Only Begotten Son of God.

Islam promotes that there are four great prophets: Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed.  What is wrong with this picture is that Jesus was way more that JUST a prophet.  They even claim that Jesus did not ever claim to be the Son of God, even though he did on more than one occasion in the first four books of the New Testament, and of course there was that whole resurrection thing where he appeared to the Apostles, Paul, and upwards of 500 people at one time.  Add to that his appearance as a resurrected being, with the wounds in his hands and feet, to people in the ancient Americas, as recorded in the Book of Mormon and his divinity becomes pretty irrefutable.  Then, cap it off with his appearance in 1820 to a farm boy in upstate New York and later in the 1830s in Kirtland, Ohio to Joseph Smith Junior and Sidney Rigdon and prophet becomes the least of the terms appropriate for referring to Jesus of Nazareth.

So, when Islam says that Jesus is a prophet, folks think that means they are honoring and respecting him.  In fact, they are attempting to diminish him by saying he is NOT divine.  They are being anti-Christ. 

So, why would a closet Muslim lie about his religion and embrace communism wrapped in a mask of 
Christianity?  Well, I cannot know for sure, since he won't come out and tell the truth (the Qur'an [or Koran if you prefer] says it is okay to lie to infidels and pagans, so absolute rules of behavior don't seem to emerge from the Qur'an),  I surmise that he is looking for a scheme that will rationalize the imposition of some form of dictatorship or oligarchy - a totalitarian government which will have, as one of its aims, to make us all equally poor (except for those who are more equal than others, like the oligarchs and high ranking "public servants" who rule over us - they will get fancy houses, armed guards, servants, and chauffeured limousines).

When Obama declared that "the US is not a Christian nation," [see endnote below] he is saying what he wants, not what is.  And, he is well on his way to getting our government and laws divorced from Christ.  Once the divorce is complete, the moral underpinnings of our laws are cut away. that will lead to immoral laws (we've already seen some of those). Eventually, the laws will become so corrupt that people will cry out for a return to morality based rule.  They may even rise up in armed rebellion. What we will then get won't be a return to the Judaeo-Christian basis of laws that apply to all.  Rather, we will get something akin to Sharia Law, which discriminates against those of differing religious beliefs and puts a religious ruler in charge (like the mullahs of Iran) who can declare things to be both illegal and immoral and give their enforcers the confidence that the rewards of heaven are theirs for their zealotry in carrying out every instruction of their politico-religious leaders.

Not a pretty picture, is it?  Before you laugh it all off, consider the source. As a faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (aka Mormons), I truly believe that we have a living prophet on the earth today.  I don't think he is perfect, but he is a very good man.  And, I believe that when he is acting in his office, he is telling me what God wants me to do.  However, I still fact-check with God himself.  And, I know that the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the Christ did what he did so that we would have freedom to choose.  He will not take that away from us and He is the one who inspired the Founding Fathers to write our Constitution.  He supports it.  

But, He will let us throw it away.  And a government that is truly run by God and according to His principles and teachings won't deprive us of choice, or tolerate mistreatment of others because they don't believe the same way as He wants us to. 

Every Christian who believes that the Bible is the word of God knows that in the end, Christ himself will return here to rule the world in person.  That is the only time it will be appropriate to have a theocracy in this land.  Until then, let the President and the Prophet be two different people.  And, let the government and the church not become one.

Endnote:  This is kind of an aside, but when I was looking into this quote I followed one link to which is supposed to be exactly that - a source of facts instead of opinions.  Instead of telling me what he said, or did not say, the site tries to tell me what he meant.  " Here's what Obama meant to say,...".  Unfortunately, this isn't the first time I have found that spouts editorial opinions instead of just providing facts.  So, rather than cite a source where the quote is written out, I linked to a YouTube video where you can hear exactly what he says.

Tom Sheppard is a business consultant and coach to small business owners and individuals. He is a recognized author with dozens of titles in business and fiction to his credit. One of his endeavors is to help those who want to see their own book in print. He does this through his trademarked Book Whispering Process (TM). The author is not an official spokesperson for any organization or person mentioned herein. 

The author is not an official spokesperson for any organization or person mentioned herein.

Visit Tom's Author's Page

(c) Copyright 2015 A+ Results LLC. All Rights Reserved. 

 Your comments are welcome... Please observe some ground rules. No profanity, vulgarity, or personal attacks. Profanity, vulgarity and personal attacks not only betray a lack of vocabulary and imagination, they also are the hallmarks of bigotry, and bigotry is the hallmark of someone who is fundamentally insecure in their views. Facts are always welcome.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Why All This Fuss About Socialism?

In the early days of Obama, many Conservatives loudly decried him as a Socialist.  A lot of mainstream folks responded with either indifference or confusion?  They either didn't believe he was a Socialist, or they didn't care.  Some even decried the Conservatives as being divisive by applying labels and using "-isms" to pigeonhole people.

A lot of people didn't seem to care about or know why they should care about having a Socialist President of the United States (POTUS).

In a previous post, I defined Socialism as:
1.  a theory or system of social organization that advocates the vesting of the ownership and control of the means of production and distribution, of capital, land, etc., in the community as a whole
2.  procedure or practice in accordance with this theory.
3. (in Marxist theory) the stage following capitalism in the transition of society  to communism, characterized by the imperfect implementation of collectivist   principles.
George Bernard Shaw, the noted Fabian Socialist, said that:
"Socialism, reduced to its simplest legal and practical expression, means the complete discarding of the institution of private property by transforming it into public property and the division of the resultant income equally and indiscriminately among the entire population." (Encyclopedia Britannica, 1946 ed., Vol. 20, p. 895.)
I don't intend here to rehash my earlier remarks about how Socialism and Christianity are mortal foes.  Rather, I want to point out here why anyone who values freedom should be opposed to Socialism and Socialist policies.

To be clear, I am not talking here about the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), Russian, China or any other country than the United States of America.  If anyone in France, the United Kingdom, Greece, or most of Europe is reading this, then they too might want pay attention and apply these lessons and ideas within their own country.

What I am talking about here is the creeping Socialism that has been overtaking the USA for decades now.

It began in the days of US President Woodrow Wilson.  He called himself a "Progressive."  The reality is that in US political history, you can use the terms Socialist, Progressive, Fascist and Liberal interchangeably.  They are just different shirts worn by the same guy (or gal).

Wilson started us down the road of Socialism, and he did it with the help of some pretty big Capitalists.  Which may account in part for the mistaken notion that Fascism is somehow a "right-wing" phenomenon, when in fact Fascism is nothing more or less than Socialism that wraps itself in the flag of a specific country and says, "We are #1," and then puts the government in charge of everything, either directly or indirectly.

If you don't believe me that Fascism and Socialism are the same guy, perhaps you will believe someone who experienced the Nazi takeover of Austria first hand.  Kitty Werthmann  was a teenager when Hitler annexed Austria.  You may remember some basics of the story from the Julie Andrews musical "The Sound of Music."

Here are a couple of highlights from Kitty's story that the Von Trapp family managed to avoid.

Hilter eliminated unemployment. He made it mandatory that no one could buy food if they didn't have a food ration card.  And, you didn't get a food ration card if you didn't have a job.  And if you didn't have a food ration card, you starved to death.  So, all those mothers who wanted to stay at home and raise their children now had no choice.  They had to go out and get jobs in the working world.
...a full-employment law was passed which meant if you didn’t work, you didn’t get a ration card, and if you didn’t have a card, you starved to death.
“Women who stayed home to raise their families didn’t have any marketable skills and often had to take jobs more suited for men."

To "help them out" Hitler instituted state-run day care (can you spell Head Start?).  As a result, the state was able to directly educate an entire generation of children from their infancy.

“When the mothers had to go out into the work force, the government immediately established child care centers.
“You could take your children ages four weeks old to school age and leave them there around-the-clock, seven days a week, under the total care of the government.
“The state raised a whole generation of children. There were no motherly women to take care of the children, just people highly trained in child psychology."

Hitler eliminated a lot of the poor health in society.  Because health care was nationalized, it was the civic duty of citizens to be fit and healthy.

“Sunday became National Youth Day with compulsory attendance. Parents were not pleased about the sudden change in curriculum. They were told that if they did not send us, they would receive a stiff letter of warning the first time. The second time they would be fined the equivalent of $300, and the third time they would be subject to jail.”
And then things got worse.
“The first two hours consisted of political indoctrination. The rest of the day we had sports. As time went along, we loved it. Oh, we had so much fun and got our sports equipment free.
“We would go home and gleefully tell our parents about the wonderful time we had."

But being fit was only half the story...

“In 1944, I was a student teacher in a small village in the Alps. The villagers were surrounded by mountain passes which, in the winter, were closed off with snow, causing people to be isolated.
“So people intermarried and offspring were sometimes retarded. When I arrived, I was told there were 15 mentally retarded adults, but they were all useful and did good manual work.
“I knew one, named Vincent, very well. He was a janitor of the school. One day I looked out the window and saw Vincent and others getting into a van.
“I asked my superior where they were going. She said to an institution where the State Health Department would teach them a trade, and to read and write. The families were required to sign papers with a little clause that they could not visit for 6 months.
“They were told visits would interfere with the program and might cause homesickness.
“As time passed, letters started to dribble back saying these people died a natural, merciful death. The villagers were not fooled. We suspected what was happening. Those people left in excellent physical health and all died within 6 months. We called this euthanasia."

And, they had a Consumer Protection Agency too, just like we recently got...

"My brother-in-law owned a restaurant that had square tables.
“ Government officials told him he had to replace them with round tables because people might bump themselves on the corners. Then they said he had to have additional bathroom facilities. It was just a small dairy business with a snack bar. He couldn’t meet all the demands.
“Soon, he went out of business. If the government owned the large businesses and not many small ones existed, it could be in control."

I could go on and on with the list of things that the National Socialists implemented, welfare, nationalized health care (free aka "affordable"), nationalized education (free education for all), gun registration followed by gun confiscation.  

One of the earliest was the removal of religion from the public square. This was followed by encouraging youth to have sex and girls to "have a baby for Hitler." Babies which would be raised by the state. 

These changes were not all done at once.  And, they were not forced on the people, at first.  They gratefully traded their freedom for the security of free government guaranteed benefits.

And here we hit the crux of matter as to why all this fuss about Socialism.  It is simply this:

Socialism makes citizens into slaves. 

You don't believe me?  Consider the state of the slave and his family.

  1. Full Employment: Slaves don't ever have to worry about unemployment.  Mom and Dad, and even the children work when they become old enough.  Mom's don't have the option of one of them staying at home to raise the kids while the other brings home the bacon.  If they don't all work, the Master punishes them.
  2. Economic Equality: No matter how hard they work, or how much they produce, they get paid the same as the slaves who do nothing every time the Master looks away.  They are taxed 100% and then the Master gives them what she or he thinks is appropriate to keep them healthy enough to keep working.
  3. Equal Opportunity: Slaves don't get to keep the fruits of their labors.  No matter how hard they work, or how smart they are, it won't automatically make their situation better.  Did you know that it is probable that Eli Whitney, the inventor of the cotton gin - an invention that made the Southern cotton industry get real economic legs and is credited with "reinvigorating slavery," actually took credit for an invention made by his slave?  You don't hear that story in American History class, do you?
  4. Free Healthcare: The slaves don't have to pay for healthcare.  The Master gives them whatever level of healthcare that the Master decides is suitable for them, even though the Master may have access to a much better level of care than is provided for the slaves.
  5. Free Housing: The slaves don't have to pay for their food and shelter.  They get whatever food and shelter the Master decides to give them.
  6. Safety From Crime: The slaves don't get to have access to guns.  That might not bode well for the Master, making it hard for him to keep the slaves in line.
  7. Free Education: The slaves don't have to pay for education.  They get whatever education the Master thinks they need to be effective in the work he assigns them.
  8. Free Clothing: The slaves don't even have to pay for their clothes.  The Master sees to it that they have whatever clothing he or she feels is appropriate for the work they do.
  9. Opportunities in Government Service: There is opportunity for a better life... Slaves that are especially pleasing to the Master can work in the "big house."  There, they get better clothes and food and education, because they are directly serving the Master.

Doesn't that list of "government benefits" sound a lot like the Liberal agenda for this country?  It does to me.

When I first read the title of Star Parker's book, Uncle Sam's Plantation, I thought, "Great, now another black writer is going to condemn this country and make up some notion of how people of color don't get enough breaks.  I couldn't have been more wrong.

Star Parker describes herself as "a welfare, crack ho."  The story she tells of her gradual realization that the welfare system has the "unintended consequence" of enslaving its recipients is enlightening.  Now, she is a champion of Capitalism and freedom.  A stance that causes many people of color to decry her as an "Oreo", black on the outside, but white on the inside.  That kind of thinking is another tool used by Liberals to snatch economic freedom and victory from the hands of the poor and keep them in poverty.

The Socialism in this country was championed by the Democratic Party by the likes of Woodrow Wilson and his protege Franklin D. Roosevelt. And, it is the Democratic Party that pushed to keep slavery in place.  It is the Democratic Party that passed the infamous Jim Crow Laws.  And, it is the Democratic Party that initiated "The War on Poverty" under Lyndon B. Johnson.  I believe it is now and always has been the aim of the Democratic Party to keep people of color under their thumb and their control.

I wish I could say that the Republican Party has staunchly opposed this creeping Socialism and reprehensible oppression of people of color.  Unfortunately, the party of Lincoln and Frederick Douglass has largely been won over into the camp of Socialism too.  Most presidential elections, we are given the choice between a Socialist (Democrat) and a lite-Socialist (Republican).

Neither choice is very appealing and neither turns back the tide of Socialism and slavery that is rolling in on us.

What is the Answer?
Constitutional Conservatives need to quit viewing politics as a spectator sport.  They need to overcome their natural revulsion over running for office and get into the ring.  They need to run for offices at all levels, local and state mostly, and take back our country one city and county at a time.

Tom Sheppard is a business consultant and coach to small business owners and individuals. He is a recognized author with dozens of titles in business and fiction to his credit. One of his endeavors is to help those who want to see their own book in print. He does this through his trademarked Book Whispering Process (TM). The author is not an official spokesperson for any organization or person mentioned herein. 

The author is not an official spokesperson for any organization or person mentioned herein.

Visit Tom's Author's Page

(c) Copyright 2015 A+ Results LLC. All Rights Reserved. 

 Your comments are welcome... Please observe some ground rules. No profanity, vulgarity, or personal attacks. Profanity, vulgarity and personal attacks not only betray a lack of vocabulary and imagination, they also are the hallmarks of bigotry, and bigotry is the hallmark of someone who is fundamentally insecure in their views. Facts are always welcome.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Don't Ever Fall In Love

Don't fall in love, ever.

Trust me on this.  I have been married to the same woman for nearly 34 years now. We dated for three months and were engaged for one month.  Doesn't that sound like falling in love?

Falling in love is like falling into a pit while wandering around the jungle of your life in the middle of the night.  And once you are in that pit, if the fall didn't break your neck, you are not getting out without a lot of effort.  And, while you are in that pit, you are easy pickings for any predator that comes along and targets you as their next meal.

And when the morning comes, and you wake up in this pit of love you have fallen into, you may not really like who you see in the pit with you.  Your new love-pit-partner may not be as physically attractive as they seemed in the dark of the night when you landed in the love-pit with them.  S/he may not be as witty or smart as you thought.  In fact, s/he may seem like the Heart song "White Lightning and Wine" was written about them, "In the morning light you didn't look so fine.  Guess you better hitchhike home."  Or like the premise of the movie "Coyote Ugly", which is based on the notion that sometimes, when you wake up the next morning in bed with an ugly stranger, you feel like a coyote caught in a trap and are willing to chew off your own arm to get out of the trap.

Hollywood movies and romance novelists like to promote wonderful, feel good stories about people falling in love.  In the books and movies, the romance is fast, the attraction is nearly frantic and overwhelming.  The characters are helpless to stop themselves from being caught up in the excitement and romance of the moment and "wham" they fall in love.

Unfortunately in many cases there is one or more spouses involved too.  And then, sometimes, the love story turns into a suspenseful murder story.  Like "Body Heat" where Kathleen Turner and Willliam Hurt fall madly, frantically, passionately in love with one another, but she is married to an older, rich man who refuses to just die off and leave the two lovers to the passion and romance that they so much deserve.  Or, perhaps you prefer "Against All Odds" where Jeff Bridges is the pro football player, Jeff Bridges, is hired to find the runaway girl friend (Rachel Ward) of James Woods.  At least in this movie, Ward and Woods aren't actual husband and wife, instead they are just embedded in a long-term romantic relationship.  Still, the love triangle acts like a black hole, sucking Bridges and Ward into its inescapable pull, and predictably destroying them in the process.

The bottom line of these scenarios is that someone is going to have their life ruined (or ended) because two people believe that falling in love is the greatest thing, and that love must conquer all.

Of course, who can forget "Fatal Attraction" where when Michael Douglas realizes that the passion of his affair is not as good as the steady relationship with his wife, he breaks things off with Glenn Close, only to have her stalk and physically threaten both him and his family.

But those cautionary tales still make the "stolen water" of adultery look sweet.
A foolish woman is clamorous: she is simple, and knoweth nothing.

For she sitteth at the door of her house, on a seat in the high places of the city, to call passengers who go right on their ways: 
Whoso is simple, let him turn in hither: and as for him that wanteth understanding, she saith to him, Stolen waters are sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant. 
But he knoweth not that the dead are there; and that her guests are in the depths of hell.
Proverbs 9:13-18

And again, they promote the notion that love is the ultimate arbiter of what is right and wrong, because whatever brings together two people who love each other, that cannot be wrong.  Right?

Even Biblical apologists at times try to gloss over the disastrous effects that came from David's taking of Uriah's wife Bathsheeba to his bed.

Falling in love also is a wonderful marketing ploy, not only for books and movies.  It tends to be the main fuel for the whole Valentines Day industry.  How many ads do you hear around then that talk about "falling in love" or "falling in love again?"

Now, after reading this much of my rant against falling in love, and given what I said at the start about my own whirlwind courtship and lengthy subsequent marriage, you may think that I am just a jaded, joyless, old curmudgeon, speaking from the depths of a bitter marriage.  That couldn't be further from the truth.

I am a hopeless romantic and I really, deeply love my wife and am happy to be married to her.  When the work day is over, I always hurry home to be with her and there is no one else I would rather spend time with than her.  But, we didn't fall in love.  We did something much hotter, stronger, more satisfying, and longer lasting than falling in love.  We chose to love each other, and we do it over and over again.

You see, the Hollywood and 5th Avenue marketing geniuses' ideas of love is not love, it is really just passion and sex.

Passion and sex are powerful sales agents. And, they are much more easily conveyed in ads, movie trailers and movies than is love.

Don't get me wrong, there was, and is, plenty of passion involved in the courtship between my wife and me.  But, we never let the passion push us into prematurely, or unthinkingly, deepening our relationship.  We both looked very carefully at each other and decided if we could stand the idea of being with each other every day even after the good looks and youth have faded away.  Fortunately for me, she thought she could still enjoy being with me.

You could say that we followed the dictum that says, "before you get married make sure you have your eyes wide open.  After you get married, keep them half closed."

So, my wife and I were definitely, strongly attracted to each other.  But both of us looked beyond the moment, the attraction and the passion, we looked beyond the whole "falling in love" thing.  And we decided we could love each other even when the heat simmers down and the bloom is off the rose.

Since then, we decide to love each other every day.  Just as when we were courting, I think about her during the day.  Sometimes she texts me or I text her, just because and just to let the other know they are in our thoughts.  We say "I love you" every day, more than once.  And we mean it.

We don't let others come between us, not friends, not in-laws, not any attractive people at work.  Not even our children.

We successfully managed to keep our romance alive through raising five children to adulthood.  During those years, we never forgot that the kids were there because of the marriage, not the other way around.

Now, we are "empty nesters."  And our romance is still burning as hot as it ever was.  We may not be quite as energetic lovers as we once were, but real quality can make up for a lot of low-quality quantity.  And even today, we sometimes find ourselves a bit "frantic" for each other.

I know it isn't the sort of thing to sell movies and romance novels, but it is the sort of thing to build long, happy and fulfilling lives with.  

Don't ever fall in love.  Instead, take control of your life and choose to love.  When two people choose to love each other, they never run the risk of falling out of love.  Because love isn't something that happens to you.  Love is something you choose. to do.

And while we are on the topic, let me say a few remarks about marriage.

The LGBT crowd has recently made quite a bit of noise about marriage.  What I find humorous about their dogged push for legally recognized marriage is that it comes after decades of denigration and dismissal of marriage as anything meaningful among the heterosexual community.  I find that funny because those who should have been champions of marriage have been among its biggest detractors.

Of course that diminution of marriage has largely come from the sector of the heterosexuals community that wants to enjoy all the benefits of sex without being hampered by the obligations that come with it, both naturally and legally.

Linda and Richard Eyre recently published a good article pointing out how the hetero community has largely discarded and denigrated marriage.
"... among the 96 to 98 percent of heterosexuals, most seem to be devaluing or completely disregarding the value of marriageThe largest threat to our society and to our economy is not the way people define marriage, but how enthusiastically and committedly they participate in it."
The LGBT community values marriage primarily because of the legal benefits it affords them.  Some value it because it also represents a level of commitment (legal, financial and otherwise) that goes beyond any heartfelt private or public exchange of vows which is only binding "as long as you both shall love" and the dissolution of which carries no more negative impacts than some heartbreak and some disappointment or disapproval among your friends.

The biggest vocal opponents of marriage are radical feminists.  The biggest silent opponents of marriage are hedonists.  And of course, Lucifer as I have mentioned in earlier posts.

Marriage, legal, binding marriage, provides a framework for the work of a lifetime.

It provides a foundation on which the emotional, mental, and spiritual well-being of children can be based to give them the best possible chances of success in this life.  Don't just take my word for it.  See what all the studies have shown about the effects of a nuclear family, or its absence, has on the lives of children.

  • Children raised in intact married families are more likely to attend college, are physically and emotionally healthier, are less likely to be physically or sexually abused, less likely to use drugs or alcohol and to commit delinquent behaviors, have a decreased risk of divorcing when they get married, are less likely to become pregnant/impregnate someone as a teenager, and are less likely to be raised in poverty. ("Why Marriage Matters: 26 Conclusions from the Social Sciences," Bradford Wilcox, Institute for American Values,
  • Children receive gender specific support from having a mother and a father. Research shows that particular roles of mothers (e.g., to nurture) and fathers (e.g., to discipline), as well as complex biologically rooted interactions, are important for the development of boys and girls. ("Marriage and the Public Good: Ten Principles," 2006,
  • A child living with a single mother is 14 times more likely to suffer serious physical abuse than is a child living with married biological parents. A child whose mother cohabits with a man other than the child's father is 33 times more likely to suffer serious physical child abuse. ("The Positive Effects of Marriage: A Book of Charts," Patrick Fagan, /Features/Marriage/index.cfm)
  • In married families, about 1/3 of adolescents are sexually active. However, for teenagers in stepfamilies, cohabiting households, divorced families, and those with single unwed parents, the percentage rises above 1/2. ("The Positive Effects...")
  • Growing up outside an intact marriage increases the chance that children themselves will divorce or become unwed parents. ("26 Conclusions..." and "Marriage and the Public Good...") * Children of divorce experience lasting tension as a result of the increasing differences in their parents' values and ideas. At a young age they must make mature decisions regarding their beliefs and values. Children of so called "good divorces" fared worse emotionally than children who grew up in an unhappy but "low-conflict'"marriage. ("Ten Findings from a National Study on the Moral and Spiritual Lives of Children of Divorce," Elizabeth Marquardt,
Marriage also provides the framework for the physical, social, mental, financial and spiritual health of the spouses.  Together, spouses can better prepare for retirement, both financially, physically, and emotionally.  As they work together, they can divide and conquer the challenges of life.  Together, they can manage to pool resources and build wealth needed for both the fun and responsibilities of life.

And, by the way, married people get more sex than single people.  Just in case you were thinking that wasn't the case.  And, contrary to sitcoms and Hollywood movies, when there is a foundation of years of trust and intimacy, and a commitment to each others' pleasure, the sex can be much, much better and more mind-blowing than the tawdry, shallow stuff that you may be seeing on HBO or pay-per-view.

And those who advocate cohabitation, living together, as a trial run for marriage, don't have a leg to stand on.  One, the statistics show that most cohabitations don't end up in marriage and of those that do, they are as likely to end in divorce as those where cohabitation did not precede marriage.

  • "Couples who lived together before marriage tend to divorce early in their marriage. If their marriage last seven years, then their risk for divorce is the same as couples who didn't cohabit before marriage."

And, those hedonists love to get the advantages of marriage that come through cohabitation, without being tied down with all those pesky legal, social and financial obligations that come with marriage.  In other words, they get to have the milk, without buying the cow.

And, if you are among those who think that premarital sex is okay, stand by for another article in the future.  But in the meantime, consider this.  What happens if you don't measure up to your spouse's former lovers?  Now, you have predisposed your marriage to have difficulties over sex, which could easily result in infidelity and divorce.

Even free sex isn't free.  You are likely to pay a heavy price for it, sometime in the future.

But, to return bring this all back to my main point.  Sex is not love.  Love may be manifested through sex.  Marriage needs sex to reinforce the bond between spouses.  But sex is not the point of marriage either.

Falling in love is really falling in lust.  It is about the powerful urge to have sex with someone else.  That powerful urge is a natural and God-given thing.  But, it is not to be taken lightly.  While it is highly pleasurable, its primary purpose is not pleasure.  Its primary purpose may not even be to produce children - given that most of the time it takes a lot of sex to result in one pregnancy.

Sex is given to help bind us closer together as man and wife.  Love is given to help us channel sex into the ways that build instead of destroy lives.  The only proper channel for sex and love is marriage between a man and a woman, where commitment, both legal, moral and financial, allows us to give our all in the bedroom and beyond to our spouse.

Falling in love is a lie.  It is a pit of destruction.  Choosing to love, and choosing to love only your spouse each and every day, is an elevated highway to profound happiness and success, both mental, emotional, spiritual and physical.

Tom Sheppard is a business consultant and coach to small business owners and individuals. He is a recognized author with dozens of titles in business and fiction to his credit. One of his endeavors is to help those who want to see their own book in print. He does this through his trademarked Book Whispering Process (TM). The author is not an official spokesperson for any organization or person mentioned herein. 

The author is not an official spokesperson for any organization or person mentioned herein.

Visit Tom's Author's Page

(c) Copyright 2015 A+ Results LLC. All Rights Reserved. 

 Your comments are welcome... Please observe some ground rules. No profanity, vulgarity, or personal attacks. Profanity, vulgarity and personal attacks not only betray a lack of vocabulary and imagination, they also are the hallmarks of bigotry, and bigotry is the hallmark of someone who is fundamentally insecure in their views. Facts are always welcome.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Lafayette Theater Shooting and 4 Dead Marines in Chattanooga - Fear and Anger, An Obama Master Stroke?

At breakfast, my wife and I were talking about the recent killing of four Marines and one Sailor in Chatannooga Tennessee and the shooting last night in a theater in Lafayette, Louisiana.  She mentioned that with Obama's directives that our military aren't allowed to carry firearms on base, that he was making our military into soft targets for terrorists.  She speculated that he is trying to arrange things to create a culture of fear and anger.

That got us talking and thinking.  What is to be gained by inciting the average American to fear and anger?

The fear part seems clear to me.  

Obama's former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel is credited with giving voice to the horrifyingly crass idea that politicians should, "never let a serious crisis go to waste."  This remark is so notorious that it has now been labeled "Rahms Rule."  And it means that
"Major crises can provide cover for distributing benefits to targeted special interest groups. The greater the magnitude of a given crisis and the shorter the interval for forming legislation to deal with it, the larger the spread of pork that can be packed into the final legislation." 

It is a very short step from using crises for political gain to creating crises in order to leverage them for political gain.  Of course, creating crises means that the one taking advantage of the crises must appear blameless in causing the crises.  Which is one of the reasons why plausible deniability is so important to politicians.

Getting the American people whipped up into a state of fear makes them more willing to accept tighter limits on their freedoms "to keep them safe."  Don't believe me?

Consider the fact that when you want to fly these days, you willingly submit to x-ray scans and body searches that are more universal and intrusive than the targeted "stop and frisk" program that caused such outrage over invasions of privacy and public humiliation in New York City.

Glen Beck wrote a novel that explained this principle of using crisis to change our view of what is acceptable in fairly large increments.  His book, The Overton Window, was a fun read, but I am afraid too many readers may have enjoyed the story so much that they missed the prime point he was making.  I hope I am wrong on that last point.

The anti-Second Amendment crowd has relentlessly used crises such as the Sandy Hook school shooting, the SC Church shooting and now the Lafayette Theater shooting as rallying cries for greater restrictions on gun ownership.  They certainly won't let any crisis go to waste in their unrelenting campaign to transform us from citizens into subjects by disarming us first piecemeal and then wholesale.

The angry part is less clear to me, and much more dangerous to all concerned.  

I guess the most logical way to use an angry American people is to get them to take the streets in violent protests.  Such widespread violence, regardless of its direct cause, would provide an excuse to implement martial law and immediately suspend nearly all civil rights.  Then, we could, almost in an instant be transformed from a Representative Republic into a dictatorship.  After all, with widespread unrest, we couldn't be expected to be able to hold elections, right?  So, we would have to continue with the crowd we have until things are settled enough (by the standards of those in power) to hold elections again.

And what would have to occur before things are "settled" enough?  Likely that would entail the suppression and elimination of those elements in society deemed as destabilizing.  In other words, all those opposed to the current power elite.

Under this state of fear and anger, troops would be authorized and used to actively attack groups and individuals all over the country until everyone finally got the message that you better toe the party line, or risk being named an enemy of the state and either killed or imprisoned.

By the time the majority of the people realized they had been hoodwinked, it would be too late to do anything about it unless they were willing to see lots of people die to change things.  All your guns would, at the least be registered, and the worst they would already be confiscated.  And peaceful and passive forms of resistance and opposition would be handled with the same level of ferocity and violence accorded those "subversive" actors who the military had been called in to put down.

It is instructive to note that "the shot heard 'round the world" at Concord and Lexington was fired when the "federal" government of England moved to confiscate the guns and ammunition of the civilly authorized militia.  The English Generals and Governors recognized that if their subjects retained their arms and ammunition, they could not be easily forced into compliance with laws dictated by a monarch and his parliament that were increasingly arbitrary and hostile to the best interests of the people.

I mentioned that the anger part is much more dangerous to all concerned.  

What I am thinking of here is that while the people are angry, individuals and groups often do things that, in a more rational moment they would never consider.  As was seen in the "Rodney King Riots" in LA and the more recent riots is Ferguson Missouri and the Baltimore Riots of 2015, a rampaging mob of people protesting violence against blacks is as likely to destroy black-owned businesses as they are to destroy those of whites or asians.  The looters really don't care who owns what they are stealing.  They just want to take things without paying for them, and then sell them for a 100% profit.

Mobocracy is both violent and mindless.  Its creators aim it in the direction they want it to go, and then they work the edges to either take advantage of targets of opportunity, or to push the mob closer toward the ultimate target.  Just to be clear here, when I speak of the creators of mobocracy, I am not usually referring to the people who actually started a rally or a march.  Those folks are often innocent pawns of those who use the rally or march to start violence.

Blacks in this country historically should be most opposed to mobocracy.  Mobocracy is what the KKK relies upon to achieve its ends.  After all, two of the appealing aspects of being in a mob is strength in numbers and the anonymity of the crowd.  Covering your face with a mask and then roaming the streets with a bunch of similarly masked people is the essence of public Klan action.  It also marks the activities of many Anarchists.  And, it is what was used to faciliate the lynching of countless blacks in the South right up through the Civil Rights era.

The issue here, for ordinary Americans, is to not allow the anger and fear of the moment, or even of the moments, to be used to drive you into supporting action that will ultimately turn you and the rising generation from citizens into subjects.

The Crisis Users like Rahm Emmanuel and his former boss, Barak Obama, and their allies jump on a crisis with both feet.  They make public statements that are filled to the brim with emotion.  They decry the tragedy and call for laws that will prevent such tragedies in the future.  And the laws are never aimed at the root causes of the problem, rather, they are aimed at the leaves of the bush of evil and are calculated to reduce the freedoms of law-abiding citizens rather than actually punishing the wrong-doer.

What do I mean by leaves and roots?  Renowned US author Henry David Thoreau is credited with saying that, "There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root."  When politicians call for stricter gun laws in the wake of a shooting, they are functionally blaming the car for the deaths caused by a drunken driver.

Why would they make such a silly and egregious error as to blame a car for the actions of a drunk driver?  Why would they blame guns for the actions of a deranged person?  Clearly, there are only two reasons any reasonably intelligent person would blame an inanimate object for the actions of a person.  Either 1) they believe that Stephen R King's horror story "Christine" about a car with a mind of its own was a true story rather than a novel and these inanimate objects are actually animated by some ancient spirit and we are about to be overrun by Killdozer. Or 2) they have a hidden agenda which involves restricting the access of law-abiding people to inanimate objects which they are lawfully entitled to have and use.

Why do I say they have a hidden agenda?  Quite simply because they are not being open and honest about their motives.  If they were, they would say things like, "there is no reason any person outside of the military or law enforcement need guns, so I want to take them away from everyone who is not using them for military or law enforcement as part of their job."

You won't find many (if any) politicians who will be this open about their objective, because they know that Obama was right when he said that Americans cling to their religion and their guns.  Although he was totally wrong when he ascribed that behavior solely to folks who are bitter, unemployed, or racist.  Americans cling to their religion because it has a proven track-record of keeping this country from becoming as self-serving as the nations of Europe.  And they cling to their guns because they know that responsibility for feeding the family and protecting the family ultimately rest with the family, not with the police or any other arm of the government.

So, now that another lunatic crashed a car into a store trying to kill people, don't let the politicians and mainstream media brainwash you into accepting the hare-brained notion that banning cars will keep lunatics from killing.  Oh, excuse me, rewrite the above and replace "crashed a car" with "used a gun" and replace "banning cars" with "banning guns."  Other than that, the arguments are the same.

Don't let fear and anger take over.  Instead, call, email, fax or write your elected officials in Washington, citing the news stories, and tell them to stand firm in defending the rights of law-abiding citizens to defend themselves against gun wielding lunatics by doing away with legalized "soft targets" in the US.

After all, what crazy killer is going to go into a theater to shoot people, if he knows that half the folks there are carrying concealed and for every one round he sends downrange, he will see four or five coming right back at him?

Tom Sheppard is a business consultant and coach to small business owners and individuals. He is a recognized author with dozens of titles in business and fiction to his credit. One of his endeavors is to help those who want to see their own book in print. He does this through his trademarked Book Whispering Process (TM). The author is not an official spokesperson for any organization or person mentioned herein. 

The author is not an official spokesperson for any organization or person mentioned herein.

Visit Tom's Author's Page

(c) Copyright 2015 A+ Results LLC. All Rights Reserved. 

 Your comments are welcome... Please observe some ground rules. No profanity, vulgarity, or personal attacks. Profanity, vulgarity and personal attacks not only betray a lack of vocabulary and imagination, they also are the hallmarks of bigotry, and bigotry is the hallmark of someone who is fundamentally insecure in their views. Facts are always welcome.

Monday, July 20, 2015

A Gift From Nicholas Cage

Do you remember the scene in the Nicholas Cage movie National Treasure where Cage puts on the glasses with strange colored lenses, invented by Benjamin Franklin, and suddenly he can clearly see all the hidden clues on the map?

Today, if you will accept it, I will give you a pair of those kind of glasses that will allow you to see the hidden clues in the trends around us and begin to make sense of them.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints has a book of scripture that they call The Book of Moses (part of The Pearl of Great Price).  In the first chapter of that book, the 39th verse God tells Moses, "For behold, this is my work and my glory - to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man."

If you don't get the distinction between immortality and eternal life, allow me to explain.  Immortality means to live forever with your spirit and body inseparably joined to one another.  And Eternal is one of the names of God, so Eternal Life means to have the kind of life that God has.

But, don't take my word for it alone.  Here is what says about immortality:

immortal condition or quality; unending life.

Contrast that with what it says about "Eternal Life."
This expression occurs in the Old Testament only in Dan. 12:2 (R.V.,"everlasting life").  It occurs frequently in the New Testament (Matt. 7:14;18:8, 9; Luke 10:28; comp. 18:18).  It comprises the whole future of the redeemed (Luke 16:9), and is opposed to "eternal  punishment" (Matt.19:29; 25:46). It is the final reward and glory into which the children of God enter (1 Tim. 6:12, 19; Rom. 6:22; Gal. 6:8; 1 Tim. 1:16; Rom.5:21); their  Sabbath of rest (Heb. 4:9; comp. 12:22). The newness of life which the believer derives  from Christ (Rom. 6:4) is the very essence of salvation, and hence the life of glory or the eternal life must also be theirs(Rom. 6:8; 2 Tim. 2:11, 12; Rom. 5:17, 21; 8:30; Eph. 2:5, 6). It is the"gift of God in Jesus Christ our Lord" (Rom. 6:23). The life the faithful have here on earth (John 3:36; 5:24; 6:47, 53-58) is inseparably connected with the eternal life beyond, the endless life of the future,  the happy future of the saints in heaven (Matt. 19:16, 29; 25:46).
Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
Now before you go and get all "God Maker" on me, just hold off and keep listening, at least until the end of this post.  Then, after you give it some consideration, feel free to disagree all you like.  But, I haven't given you the gift yet.

Another thing we learn, both in The Book of Moses and in The Holy Bible is that Lucifer, or Satan or the Devil if you prefer, is as real as Jesus Christ and God the Father.  You actually cannot believe in Jesus Christ and not believe in Lucifer.  After all, Jesus fasted forty days and then was tempted of the Devil.

Now, the whole cloven hoof, forked tongue and tail thing is just pure fairy tale.  Lucifer was a son of God, just like you and I are.  The difference between us and him is that he thought he was smarter than God.  Okay, some of us may have that in common with him now, but we didn't when he made a name for himself.

The Book of the Revelation of Saint John, commonly known as Revelations, mentions that "there was a war in heaven" and that Lucifer was cast down into the earth, along with those who followed him.  Without going into the whole reasons why he  got in a fight with God, let's just focus on the fact that his rebellion got him kicked out of Heaven.  

Now, we are almost to the gift part, so hold your mind open a little longer.

Lucifer is understandably bitter about how things have gone and his fondest hope is to screw things up and ruin God's whole day.  What better way to do that than to destroy his "work and glory?"

If you accept that God wants to make us immortal and give us eternal life and that Lucifer is real, and real angry, then you can look at the entire course of human history as an ongoing struggle between these two opposing forces.  On the one hand, God wants immortality and eternal life for us.  On the other, Lucifer wants to deny us immortality and eternal life.

And, before you start feeling a victim here of forces outside of your control, please realize we have the freedom to choose for ourselves and that our entire purpose here is to be tested to see if we will choose the path that leads to eternal life, or not.

This is the gift.  A lens which allows you to begin to make sense of not only human history, but the trends of our times.

The crazy conspiracy theorists have one thing right, there is a grand conspiracy behind much of what is going on.  But the Grand Conspirator is Lucifer, an undying son of God, cast out and determined to make a wreck of our lives.  And because he is undying, he can promulgate his conspiracy from generation to generation by influencing and wooing followers, both witting and unwitting, to promote his tactics and plans.

Now, the challenge you face today is this, can you use this lens to look at anything in the world around you and begin to discern the true motives behind the trend?

I will give you one trend to look at right away.  Then, you will have to do more on your own.

We cannot become immortal if we never become mortal.  In other words, if Lucifer can prevent God's children from ever being born in this world, he will have succeeded in his purpose to thwart God.  Now, think about trends like abortion and same-sex marriage.  Do you see how they suit the purposes of Lucifer in trying to prevent the immortality of God's children?

Now, add to the mix things like war, which not only cuts many lives short and warps the lives of many others while spreading misery, it also kills lots of people who can then never have children.

Disease and plagues, likewise.

If you use this lens, you will see things very differently.  The radical feminist movement, for one.

Radical Feminists (not people who say equal pay for equal work) have promoted an agenda that advocates not only the abolition of marriage as an institution, but promote that women shouldn't have sex at all and if they are weak and must give in, it should only be with other women.  In short, they would be happiest if men did not exist at all.

The same is true for radical environmentalists - again, not those who say we need to be kind to our world and use our resources wisely - they think the world is better off without people.  The folks at PETA advocate that a rat is the same as a dog is the same as a child.  In other words, they place no higher value on human life than they do on that of any animal.  In fact, because people eat animals, they think less of humanity than they do of cows.  Of course, they conveniently overlook the fact that all life on this world is sustained by the ending of another life.  The wolf or man kills the cow and eats it.  The cow in its turn eats plants, which kills the plant.  But I digress.

The whole "population bomb" crowd who in the 60's predicted we would have food riots in NYC by the 90s's have been preaching population control based on the totally disproven, and patently false premise that the world food supply is going to be less than needed to prevent starvation and world war.

These movements that have a net effect of  advocating the elimination, or dramatic reduction of humanity are clearly seen through this lens of long-term struggle between Lucifer and God as chess moves by Lucifer to restrict the number of God's children who can gain immortality.

Failing to prevent all births, Lucifer has to implement additional plans to thwart that whole "eternal life" thing.

What do we need to do to qualify for eternal life?  Well, the list is short, and long, depending on how you look at it.  The short version is do what God says we should.  The long version is do ALL that God says we should.

Lucifer has several ways to win at this part of the game.

If he can convince people that God doesn't exist, then it is pretty much game over for those folks.  For those who believe in God, if he can convince them that Lucifer doesn't exist, then they will let their guard down and be likely to compromise and imagine up a god that suits their own likes and dislikes. And the list goes on and on.

Three of his most insidious and powerful tactics are:

  1. Make it look like so much fun to do things we shouldn't while making doing good things look very boring, unimaginative, and unfulfilling.
  2. Make it look like doing good is highly restrictive, a severe loss of freedom.  In contrast, he makes doing things we shouldn't look like the real exercise of freedom.
  3. Make doing things we shouldn't do look like we are doing good and make doing things we should do look like we are doing things we shouldn't.  In other words, get us to think that evil is good and good is evil. 
 - On this last point it is worth noting that the whole support of gay marriage uses this tactic quite successful by conflating that struggle with the civil rights movement of the 60's.

The Civil Rights movement was all about what Jesus said was the second most important thing we should do - treat others as we would have them treat us.

The institutionalized discrimination against people of color was a shameful way to treat fellow chidren of God.  It punished and castigated people, not because of their behaviors, but because of the color of their skin.

In likening the gay marriage movement to Civil Rights, the supporters of gay marriage made an issue of choice and turned it into an issue of birthright.  I know many, including at least two of my own children, will take issue with this last statement.  Never fear, I will give that subject a whole article on its own. But that is for another day.

When you have the ability to use this lens, the sweep and sway of human history as well as the social trends of yesterday and today begin to fall into a pattern and make a more predictable flow.  Furthermore, if you believe in God, it begins to give you a road map to better navigate the buffetting winds of the times and to prepare for what is coming next, because we know that Lucifer will not retreat or relent in his onslaught, and we will continue to pick up the tempo and ferocity of his assault on those who believe in God and are trying to do what He has commanded.

Tom Sheppard is a business consultant and coach to small business owners and individuals. He is a recognized author with dozens of titles in business and fiction to his credit. One of his endeavors is to help those who want to see their own book in print. He does this through his trademarked Book Whispering Process (TM). The author is not an official spokesperson for any organization or person mentioned herein. 

The author is not an official spokesperson for any organization or person mentioned herein.

Visit Tom's Author's Page

(c) Copyright 2015 A+ Results LLC. All Rights Reserved. 

 Your comments are welcome... Please observe some ground rules. No profanity, vulgarity, or personal attacks. Profanity, vulgarity and personal attacks not only betray a lack of vocabulary and imagination, they also are the hallmarks of bigotry, and bigotry is the hallmark of someone who is fundamentally insecure in their views. Facts are always welcome.