Debate or Brawl?

As I re-read the following paragraphs, I  became depressed even though I wrote the text.   However, the bottom line, God is in charge.  I have victory in Jesus as to all believers.   We have joy even in the middle of elections.   This world is not our home, yet, while here, I belive our Lord expects us to be bold and take an unapologetic stand on God’s Word.   We are not to be jerks, be rude and obnoxious, but we are not to cave on Truth.  

Last night I watched the Texas Republican Debate.  I had an afghan near me and time and again I put it over my head.  The three front runners acted anything  but presidentielection 16al.  They screamed, talked over one another, and were totally rude.  I am a total conservative at virtually every level, but I was embarrassed, ashamed, and disgusted.  Trump, Rubio, and Cruz were like third graders fighting on the playground.  Kasich was like the nerd eager to hang out with the cool guys wishing he had what it took to get into the fight.

A rich  man never has to act like he is rich, he just is.  A strong man doesn’t have to knock things over to prove he is strong, he just iscreaming childs.  A wise man doesn’t have to talk about how wise he is, he just exhibits wisdom.  The weak and insecure are the one’s who scream.

Carson was, “Mr. Cool,” and though it is apparent in the media today few actually paid much attention to  him. “Everyone has equal rights, but not extra rights.”   Then when he referred to the “Fruit salad of our lives,”  he stepped even  further above the frey.  It took a while, but CNN and FOX finally figured out his reference was Matthew 7:16, ‘by their fruits you will know them.’  The “top rung” of candidates may have some good vines, but the fruit produced last night was  rotten.   In no way could I vote for a liberal or socialist, those platforms are  entirely  in opposition to God’s Word, still, I am frustrated with the conservative choices.

Listening to “the people” in my community and those interviewed on television, most are as disgusted as I am.  However, apparently, there are millions that are basking it it all.  The media loves it and seems to be able to sort it all out.   I totally ‘get’ differing ideas, but I can’t grasp that men who believe they can lead and represent the United States, host, and negotiate with other world leaders can act like adolesent scrapping children.  I ‘get it’ that it is going to take a bold, unapologetic conservative leader to begin to turn this old ship around, but these men need to mature a great deal before they are ready to do so.   Every screaming soundbite was inappropriate and  will be used by the opposition in the final campaign.

More than thirty years ago there was a major conflict in the Southern Baptist Convention over the conservative/moderate camps in oppositoin to the more liberal  Baptists.  The outward issues were the inerrency of the Bible, women pastors, and to a lesser degree the gay movement.  There were other issues, but these were the outward expressions of the opposing camps.  I traveled with conservative leaders as the singer to a number of events.  We drove,  we flew, we walked, etc.  I sang many songs and led a lot of choirs.   I really didn’t know  what all was going on, I simply loved to sing and share Christ with my music, but I observed and learned a great deal.

As I traveled I began to witness absured behavior in both camps.  These men were hateful to each other.  They had to have their way.  Leaders would be on the platform debating the issues and church members and zealous new believers had to watch the spectacle.  Young pastors who came with great antipcation, eager to meet the leaders of this “Great Commission” organization left dejected and I know of some who left the ministry.   I was shaken, but  had I not been mature enough in my faith to be secure in Christ and in my calling,  I would have walked out and never returned. These godly leaders, acting ungodly, “hurt a lot of children.” I often said, “The liberals think the conservatives are idots and the conservatives think the liberals are lost.” 

Again, I “got it” that there were differing ideas, but to act as they did turned me totally away from convention participation.  The unbelieveing media, newspapers, TV, and  radio, observed all of this foolishness and had a hayday.  I was embarrassed and  I haven’t attended a national SBC  event since.

Back to the election, I’m not throwing in the towel, and I will vote.  However, regardless of who the Republican candidate is in November, he will recieve my vote.  I will pray without ceasing for our country, for my children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and for you and yours.

IOWA 2016

The IOWA CIRCUS… CAUCUS…THE HAWKEYE CAUK-EYE…. I realize this a serious and an important event, but I have laughed ouCircust loud many times during the build up to February 1.   Anyone who knows me realizes I am one of the “curses of the world,” a Christian, right-wing  conservative, white, white-haired baby boomer, but the candidates and voters on all thirty or so sides have brought a great deal humor and sometime embarrassment. (I enjoy  reading newspapers from other countries, but yes, as I read, I get angry and embarrassed at how they look at us.)  In fifteen minutes of broadcast time, we learn that each candidate is the finest most qualified person on the planet  and in the same fifteen minutes are told they are all idiots with absolutely no candidate qualified.  One single soundbite out of context from each candidate makes him or her the most brilliant or the biggest idiot.  The whole thing is a hoot.  
I love to watch the recent “man on the street” interviews from FOX and CNN.   Person after person on the east coast have no idea where Iowa is, not just millenniIowaals, but senior citizens as well.   I laughed out loud, but it really isn’t all that funny. As a Midwesterner, I believe it was in the fourth grade in Southeast Elementary, we HAD to learn  the locations of all the states. Yes, I know where all the states are and I think I can name the capitals; I know my wife, Dorothy, knows them all. In addition,  I’d venture to say ALL the students in our school sixty years ago can still identify Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut …etc. 
We were expected to know our senators, representatives, and certainly our president and VP. In the man on the street interview, all knew who Obama is, but  few coulSenate seald identify the picture of our Vice-President.  Of course, all knew Adele, Howard Stern, Jenifer Lopez, and the cast of “Naked and Afraid.”  However,  only a few knew how many senators are in the senate, the branches of government, nor how many judges sit on the Supreme Court. One college student when asked the years of the Civil War she answeredCivil Ward, I think in the 1950’s;  A COLLEGE STUDENT.    Few knew where Benghazi is, one adult man thought Benghazi was a model of a car.    This is basic stuff, not the knowledge of only the serious scholar AND THESE PEOPLE VOTE…..

Oil rig
Most have a favorite candidate, but are clueless why.  Many are excited about the prospects of lots of “free stuff” from certain candidates, yet are unaware of the impact of taxes on themselves, much less businesses. Most were against “big oil,” but didn’t know why.  The people interviewed all appeared  to be not only American citizens, but grew up and were educated in the States.

“Ah, Bill, these are just a few people that were picked out to make fun of.” I’m sure there is a certain amount of truth in that, however,  I believe it is more true than not.  I am greatly concerned that people vote or caucus without knowledge of what they are voting for. As a “Baptist church guy,” I have always felt that only ACTIVE members should make decisions concerning the church. Even though all members generally have a right to vote, if a person is not active, he is clueless and can cause great damage to the body.  
The  point of this light-hearted, but serious  “fulmination” is, KNOW WHY  YOU VOTE FOR YOUR CANDIDATE! If you honestly stand on the left, at least know why. Take the time to know the issues and don’t follow your emotions.   It is too serious to be flippant or to be a clueless “air-head.”  if you are “on the right,” know why you stand where you stand.  Be HOT OR COLD.
My passion is for Christ and His Word and I would truly believe a president totally sold out to Christ would be, by far, the very best president.   I believe, I know, God was the foundation of our founding fathers.  Our country WAS birthed on faith in God and many of the early leaders not only believed in God but trusted Christ Jesus.    I do, however,  know that Christ isn’t very “popular” in 21st century America.
I have not made my final decision for whom I will vote in the Georgia primary. It is pretty clear I am a conservative. Likely in the months to come I will unapologetically make a stand. However,  I will say I will not vote for a candidate who has the desire to continue this anti God, anti faith, freedom and “tolerance ” for everyone except those to have a deep faith in Jesus.
Is the Iowa caucus all that important?  Well, I’m not certain.  It has brought us all a great deal of entertainment and some drams.  What I am certain of is that God is still in charge and “If His people, who are called by His name, will humble themselves, seek His face, and turn from their wicked ways, He will  hear from heaven, forgive their sins, and heal their land.”