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What Are You Worth?

What Are You Worth?

I’m guest posting today over at Alovelycalling.com again! This time focusing on the question of self-worth. What are you worth? If you were put up on an auction block today, what kind of price would you fetch? What dollar amount would equate to your value? Do you think you are worth a hundred dollars? Or maybe ten thousand? A million? Surely you don’t think you’re worth a billion dollars, right? Come on! What kind of narcissistic psychopath are you? Well, according to our American society, you are worth about $5 million. Hmm…not too shabby. As a livescience.com article points out, “If a safety code will cost more than $5 million for every person it will save, ‘regulators eyes start to glaze over. They say that that is too expensive.’” Have you ever thought of yourself as being worth $5 million before? How would you treat an object you owned if was valued at $5 million? Click here to read the... read more
It’s Okay To Doubt Your Faith

It’s Okay To Doubt Your Faith

Yes, if you have doubts about your faith, that’s okay. Actually, it can be good! –  Huh? –  Yes, it’s healthy to have doubts. I think within some sectors of the church, a heavy emphasis is placed on believing the right things, and having the correct head knowledge in order to have a healthy faith. The problem is, to some extent, we can’t really control our beliefs. We can’t just choose to believe something, even if we want to.  – Belief can be defined as, “trust, faith, or confidence in someone or something.” Perhaps one might say they believe in the existence of God, for example, but if they don’t place their trust, faith, or confidence in God, then they don’t really believe (even if they feel they believe, or say they believe). – If someone said they believed that it was going to snow, but went out in shorts and T-shirt, then they didn’t really believe it was going to snow, or perhaps they have a desire to experience hypothermia, or possibly frostbite. –  In order to have true belief, that belief has to influence our actions. Sure, we can sometimes make ourselves believe things if we try hard enough, but sometimes we need more evidence. I would really like it if ice cream was good for you, but no amount of believing is going to change the chemistry. I would need some new evidence or data to influence and change my beliefs. –  In the same way, sometimes we need more evidence to believe in God or a certain doctrine. This is good, after all, we are... read more
Are Homeschoolers Socialized?

Are Homeschoolers Socialized?

“One of the most persistent criticisms of home-schooling is the accusation that home-schoolers will not be able to fully participate in society because they lack ‘socialization’,” began an article in the Washington Times. I’ve had the privilege of attending public schools, and participating in homeschooling. I even did both at the same time for many years. Have I only been half as well socialized as I could have been? – Indeed, “socialization” is often the biggest concern cited by those unwilling to homeschool their children. Is there good solid evidence for believing your child will end up unable to cope with our complex society as a result of receiving his or her education at home? – – First off, what exactly IS socialization? Here are a few definitions:  – The modification from infancy of an individual’s behavior to conform with the demands of social life. A continuing process whereby an individual acquires a personal identity and learns the norms, values, behavior, and social skills appropriate to his or her social position. The act or process of making socialistic. – It sounds to me like the first two definitions are what most people are concerned with when they throw out the word, socialization. – I sure hope they don’t mean the third definition, although that is quite possible, seeing as the public education system was founded by socialists. (See Weapons of Mass Instruction, John Taylor Gatto) – In general, those who fear un-socialization from home-schooling, or use this fear as an argument against the model, are using the word in the sense that—by home-schooling—your children will not be well adapted to... read more
When Christians Find Joy In The Sin Of Others

When Christians Find Joy In The Sin Of Others

We love heroes, but even more than heroes, we love to see heroes fall. As a culture, we can’t get enough of our celebrity news gossip. We especially love it when a Christian celebrity falls. This lends validation to the fantasy that God doesn’t exist, and therefore we are not responsible to Him for our actions and lives. It’s not surprising when non-Christians rejoice in the sin of Christians.   It makes sense when the world celebrates iniquity; what doesn’t make sense is when Christians do the same thing.   I have been appalled at the way many Christians will rejoice when a Christian leader they don’t agree with is exposed to be guilty of some heinous sin. Just like the world, they find this Christian’s sin to be validation that everything they taught was false. While this is a genetic fallacy, there is a deeper issue here.   How can we as Christians celebrate the sin of another, let alone a member of the Body of Christ?  It’s like some are just waiting in the bushes for a Christian leader to fall so they can assure themselves they don’t have to listen to anything they said. This is not love, and it is not how we as Christians should respond.   When we rejoice in the sin of others, we reveal we have not love, but jealousy in our hearts.   As Paul informs us in 1 Corinthians 13:6-7,    “[Love] does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”   Even if we do... read more
Why Do We Want People To Like Us?

Why Do We Want People To Like Us?

To elaborate on my previous post, When Speaking The Truth Makes You A Target, what is stopping us from speaking the truth? Why do we hold back?  – When it all comes down to it, the motivation behind our failure to boldly speak the truth is fear. We’re afraid of something. In our daily lives, this fear manifests itself most commonly in the fear of what other people will think of us. – Now where does that come from? Why do we care so much about what other people think about us? Evolutionary biologists would say we have an instinctive need to feel accepted because it helps ensure our survival. If we conform and make sure we “fit in” and people like us…then our chances for survival are greater. While these biologists have correctly observed that our desire to be liked by others is instinctive, they have over-stepped their bounds of expertise and are making philosophical conclusions based on their scientific findings. – Regardless, in our everyday lives, I don’t think we are motivated to “fit in” and be liked out of a sense of self-preservation. Most of us are not in danger of dying if people dislike us because of our beliefs. Now, in other parts of the world, this may be the case, but in America, we are allowed freedom of speech (for now.) So what is it we fear? Why do we want other people to like us?  – The irony of pride Often, I think it comes down to pride. On some subconscious level, we think people should have to like us. That’s pride. No... read more
The Arsenal: Re-Launched!

The Arsenal: Re-Launched!

It’s taken awhile, but my new site has finally arrived! It’s still a bit of a work-in-progress, but it is functional now! Woo! During the transfer from Blogger, the formatting for my posts was lost, so as a result, many of my old posts are currently in drafts. However, I will be updating them and then re-posting them as soon as they are finished!   I will also have plenty of new content coming out as well, AND! I’d also like to have more guest posting, so stay tuned for details on that.   Additionally, make sure to sign up for my newsletter to receive all my lastest posts, special deals on books and products as they become available, and unique content! Subscribe to my newsletter! * indicates required Email Address * First Name Last Name Some other updates:  My ebook, Misunderstood Modesty, is coming along! I’m about 1/3 of the way done with it. Be sure to check out my family’s new website on family home business and discipleship, CoastalConservatory.com Kingdom Pen has been rolling along, and we will be launching a new contest tomorrow! I will be recording, mixing, and mastering the debut album for the Long Family Singers, and will be getting started in June! Life is crazy busy!!! What is new with you? Any big events or projects you’re working on? Share in the... read more
There Are No Genders In Christ?

There Are No Genders In Christ?

I have encountered a number of Christians who hold the belief that there are no significant gender differences in Christ. They therefore believe that men and women have the same function, and that we should not distinguish between the genders when it comes to the church or daily life. Their evidence comes from Galatians 3:28, “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Taken by itself, this verse certainly looks pretty definitive. It says right there that there is neither male nor female, all are one in Christ Jesus! The problem is we cannot just read individual verses. This verse is not meant to be read by itself, but in context with the rest of the chapter, and the letter of Galatians as a whole. Context of Galatians   There is a problem Paul is addressing in the Galatian church, namely, the issue of works righteousness vs. righteousness through faith. In the opening of Galatians Paul states that he is “amazed” that they have so quickly deserted the gospel that he taught them for a different and false “gospel.” In the first two chapters, Paul explains the gospel he taught them came straight from God, and that they should not listen to any other “gospel”. Next, he begins explaining just why the false teaching is false. Context of Galatians chapter 3 Moving into chapter 3, Paul explains that it is Faith which saves, not following the Law (works). “But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up... read more
What Should I Do With My Life?

What Should I Do With My Life?

What Should I Do With My Life? I’ve wanted to be many things throughout my young life. First, I wanted to be a construction worker. I loved building forts out of blocks, and building roads in the dirt under a tree in our backyard. Building things was cool. Then I wanted to join the army. Watching Davy Crockett a million times might have had some influence. Guns were cool. Next I wanted to be a football player. I couldn’t imagine life without playing football, so for a long time, I figured the perfect way to die would be on the football field after making some spectacular game-winning play. That would be awesome. At some point in time I realized that I wouldn’t be able to play football my whole life, and my odds of dying while playing were extremely low. What to do? Nothing 9-to-5 really interested me. I loved history though, and would spend hours watching documentaries while other kids watched cartoons (though I did watch a few of those too). Maybe I would be a historian! But what do historians do but teach? And teaching didn’t appeal to me. Well…I also really liked space and science. Maybe I’ll learn Astrophysics and become a rocket scientist? Of course, the only problem is you can’t really do anything with Science if you don’t also have an affinity for math. I do not have an affinity for math. So now what? All the things I like I either can’t do any more, am not good enough at, or don’t make enough money. Maybe this blog could support me, but that’s... read more
2014 Top 10 – My Most Popular Posts

2014 Top 10 – My Most Popular Posts

2014 has been a great year of blogging, and was also probably the most difficult year I’ve ever had–in more ways than one. However, overall, all of the difficulty and changes have been very good.I wrote most posts in the past year than in any previous year, so to recap 2014, here are my top 10 most popular posts: (click on the images to visit the posts)   10. No Hugging; Now What? A light-hearted follow-up to my series on why I don’t hug girls, seeking to find a healthy alternative.   9. Emotional Purity –Part 1 A post introducing my series on emotional purity, and why I have personally come to support the concept.           8. I Am A Sexist   My awful confession that I think men and women are different, and created for different purposes.My friends at Freejinger had fun with this one.         7. I Got a C For Defending the Bible A real life and personal example of the bias of colleges against Christians and truth. I have heard many stories about schools showing bias against Christians, but had never experienced it myself until my Intro to the New Testament class which I took at Ohio State.Thankfully, this C was not enough to tank my grade, and I still finished with an A. It wasn’t as bad as the movie “God’s Not Dead.”   6. This Pastor Hates His Children Probably the most difficult article I’ve ever written, this was inspired, again, by witnessing an article being shared around the internet by Christians praising this pastor for... read more
Waiting For Life To Start

Waiting For Life To Start

Life in middle class America is simple. Generally, you are born to parents who want you to be happy. Your childhood is spent getting spoiled and taught that money isn’t all that matters in life Then you get older, and you start going to school. First it’s just half a day, and you’re in a comfortable room with lots of bright colors and toys. You have a teacher who always smiles and talks to you like she’s expecting an ice cream truck to drive up any second and hand out free ice cream to everyone. Then you go to school for the whole day, but at least you have two recesses. And then only one recess. The toys disappear. Creative writing time is eliminated. Story time is eliminated. And then recess falls by the wayside too. Next the windows start to disappear, replaced by barren walls or covered up by heavy blinds. The desks shrink. The markers and crayons go bye-bye. Heck, some students seem to never even be able to find a pencil. You still have some writing, but it’s only for teaching the mechanics of English. If you happen to take a Literature class, you will read such marvelous works as the depressing and pointless “Catcher In The Rye,” or something as mind-bogglingly dull, inconsequential, and meaningless as “Their Eyes Were Watching God.” I think they have you read these books in school to crush any possibility students may gain an interest in reading. Middle school only matters in that it prepares you for high school. High school only matters in that it prepares you for college.... read more