Monday, December 22, 2008

True Christmas Spirit

When I think of Christmas I always get this mental image in my mind of what I think it should be. I picture the perfect Christmas centering around time spent with extended family. There's the tree, surrounded by lots of presents; the meal, consisting of the biggest spread you could ever ask for; and the fellowship, hanging out after a day of opening presents and eating... and possibly a nap on the couch.

Christmas is comfortable, warm, happy. I think of the song lyrics, "Have yourself a merry little Christmas, let your heart be light. From now on our troubles will be out of sight..."

And while the reality is, those words are so unrealistic, it's what I've come to expect from this time of year.

But this year, all those expectations are starting to fade as Christmas isn't feeling as warm, merry, or trouble-free. I'm starting to realize why, for some people, Christmas is a season of sadness.

My grandpa is dying, my parents will be leaving to be with him, and all of a sudden Christmas isn't light. It's hard and sad and uncertain and I have mixed feelings about how I should be feeling.

I can feel sorry for myself, sit around and pout, and admittedly, I have done some of that. I can feel sad and hopeless, as though this were the end of the world, and admittedly, I've done some of that too. But what I really want to be focusing on is the fact that the true meaning and purpose behind Christmas isn't entirely light, warm, and merry.

Certainly the birth of the Christ child was a merry occasion. The Salvation of the world had come. But salvation isn't free, and the birth meant that there was certain death to come. But even in the dark sadness of this death, there was hope and life for all who believed.

For my grandpa, and for the rest of the family, there is hope and life and light. Grandpa is trusting in Jesus and soon he will be with him. He will spend eternity with the Light of the World. He will have life everlasting. And while this Christmas season we will feel his absence, ultimately, this is a wonderful joyous time for us all. One day we will be with Grandpa in heaven, and until then, I know that he will be praising God and walking with Jesus. And with that in mind, I can "let my heart be light."

Jesus really is the reason for the season.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

First Amendment Failure

I highly recommend watching Ben Stein's documentary, Expelled, which is now available on dvd. It exposes the truth that Americans are not as free as one might believe.

Our freedoms are always something that have set us apart from other countries. One of our often-recited and highly treasured freedoms is our first amendment, freedom of speech. We love being able to write and say what we please on any given topic. Or can we?

Expelled reveals the truth that Americans are not able to speak or write on whatever they want. It takes an in depth look into the measures taken to keep freedom of speech at bay--on the topic of intelligent design.

Highly recognized and prominent individuals have been removed from their jobs simply for mentioning the topic of intelligent design. Expelled reveals the truly disturbing fact that Americans aren't allowed to openly speak or write on whatever they want.

So that brings one to ask, are we truly as free as we think we are?

Thursday, November 6, 2008


Last night I watched a little bit of the TV show Nightline, just enough to hear a theory about Obama's win on Tuesday. That theory was, due to Oprah's endorsement of Obama, he beat out Hilary Clinton to be the Democratic nominee. Not only that, but Oprah may have helped him win the entire election.

The show stated that anything endorsed by Oprah sees dramatic popularity increases. If it's a product, sales spike. Take for example, Oprah's Book Club. Books that would otherwise remain obscure or unknown to the majority of Americans are now flying off the shelves and into homes. Why? All because they have the "O" label slapped on the cover. Americans think, "Oprah loves it, it must be good!"

So Nightline tied this "phenomenon" to Obama, since he--like so many books--was endorsed by Oprah. This, the show also indicated, was the reason why he beat Clinton in the primaries. If Oprah hadn't been behind Obama, he probably wouldn't have won, for it gave the equation, Obama - Oprah = Hilary.

This idea seemed a little odd at first glance, but when you think about it, it's completely believable. How many thousands upon thousands of Americans not only watch Oprah, but think she's a goddess of salvation? Yes, it is entirely believable that a vast majority of her loyal followers bought into her backing of Obama.

And now, what's Obama going to do with this huge help he's received from Oprah? Vice President Oprah? Or is he going to change his name to Oprama? Or maybe he'll follow in her footsteps and at Christmas give all of us "Obama's Favorite Things." Hey, spread the wealth!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

You Can't Say That!

Since last night's election of Barack Obama as the next president of the United States, there has been a lot of criticism coming from both sides. Conservatives are complaining, and fearing the worst. Liberals are upset that anyone would speak out against Obama. It's an interesting turning of the tables.

For the last 8 years, Liberals have had a hay-day bashing George W. Bush. There have been smears, exaggerations, bold faced lies, and lots of rumors. Now it's the Conservatives' turn. They're voicing their disdain for the new President-elect and the Liberals can't take it.

But it gets better. Most of the criticisms I've heard, or read, on Obama are all based on fact and truth. Many are based on the things Obama said with his own mouth while campaigning. Conservatives don't like his socialistic tax policy, his foreign affairs policy, his statements in his autobiographical books, his stance on abortion, and his flip-flopping on his numerous stances. All these concerns, they're voicing. Not made-up lies or fabricated stories, just the truth as it has been presented by our President-elect.

So why are the Liberals mad? If it's the truth, why should it matter? It seems that Liberals have become so accustomed to dealing out lies, they can't handle the truth. So, you Conservatives, don't you dare give them the truth about Obama; they can't stand it.

It's an interesting double-standard, and with the media heavily run by Democrats, it will be interesting to see how all this plays out. I very much doubt that there will be much public Obama-bashing for perhaps a very long time. But don't worry, the Republicans will be there to do that.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Coming Soon: Election Day


So tomorrow is Election Day, and whether you're a Democrat or Republican or neither, I urge you, get out and vote.

We so often forget that men and women have died to give us this right and freedom. We wouldn't be doing this if people hadn't fought for it. Freedom isn't cheap, so don't skip out on all your opportunities to be a free member of society.

Also, I encourage you to think before you vote. Weigh what's really important to you and choose the candidate that is most in line with that. Some important things to remember are national security, economy, environment, human life.

Don't forget and don't choose to stay home; get out and vote!
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