Monday, February 26, 2007



Everyone has one. How they use it is a different story.

I met a woman today who, by all accounts, is evil.

She is a caretaker in the DCFS foster care system. Her home is the temporary residence for any number of children in the custody of the State of Illinois. She recieves a check for a generous amount every month by the taxpayers of Illinois to care for these vulnerable and needy children whose lives are in various stages of abuse or disruption.

When she gets a new child to care for she takes them to the doctor, has them examined and suggests the doctor write this “undisciplined” child a prescription for Ritalin, Concerta, Valium or some other drug used to sedate the minds of children and adults.

Most of them are on two or three different sedatives or anti-anxiety medications such as Valium of Xanax. This makes the children easier to control while they are in her custody.


Suburban St. Louis man
Michael Devlin is arrested for kidnapping and viciously abusing two young boys.

Evil. Nothing more than evil.

The individuals who have done such evil things have had to make some sort of equity with their conscience in regards to their actions. They have weighed the pros and cons against what they can acquire and have made a choice to follow their desires.

Pinocchio wasn’t alone. Everyone wrestles with their conscience to some degree. It speaks to all of us.

No one makes decisions for us. We must sleep at night with the decisions we have made and their result on our conscience.

The Bible speaks often of a man’s conscience.

Paul addresses the issue of conscience when he tells Timothy that in the last days men and women would have a conscience that has become seared as if by a hot iron (1Timothy 4:2).

How true the prophetic words of the Apostle have become.

In other places the Word encourages us to have a right conscience and a clean conscience before God (
Hebrews 13:18).

It is probably the least recognized and most under-appreciated part of a person’s being but the improtance of our conscience remains great!

We must keep our conscience clean.

Saturday, February 17, 2007


The unthinkable has finally occurred. Jeff Gordon was penalized for cheating on Thursday at the Daytona 500.

Gordon’s car was found to be sitting too low to the ground. Even though Gordon won the qualifying race he will begin the Daytona 500 in the 42nd slot. Gordon's was the sixth team in three days to be caught with technical violations, and the season hasn't even begun.

Michael Waltrip, whose Toyota Camry failed inspection after an illegal substance was found in the gas line, committed the most serious of the violations.

His crew chief and team director were suspended indefinitely and kicked out of the Daytona International Speedway. Waltrip was docked 100 driver and car owner points.

Also in violation on Thursday were the teams of Matt Kenseth, Kasey Kahne, Elliott Sadler and Scott Riggs, whose crew chiefs were all fined and suspended. All drivers also lost points reported
Fox News .

Most sports have volumes of pages specifying and defining every rule and activity possible within the sport. Not so with NASCAR.

At 184 pages, the 2007 edition of the
NASCAR Nextel Cup rulebook is nearly twice as long as it was two years ago (96 pages), but it's still not much wider or longer than a checkbook. The fact that every roll bar, rear view mirror, and rocker arm is covered within such a small amount of type means there is a lot of room for "interpretation".


They’re everywhere. Trying to bend the rules without breaking.

Cheaters operate in the belief that somehow they will be able to achieve legitimate victories through illegitimate means. The problem is that it simply is not possible. Cheaters convince themselves that avoiding approved avenues of action will somehow bring them a success with value but it won’t.

I would rather genuinely earn second place than cheat my way into first place. There’s no value in a dishonest effort, even if it wins. This is the reason why no one celebrates Barry Bonds or Mark McGwire. Their efforts and great achievements are wounded from the dishonest means that achieved them.

Being genuine is always better than being dishonest.

It is better to admit or suffer a genuine failure than to celebrate a fraudulent success.

It’s a pity that talented, driven and often clearly creative people resort to cheating; the lazy man’s method of success. They spend energy, that could be harnessed to achieve legitimate success, to mire their reputation and their efforts in the gray areas of deception and half-truths.

It never ceases to amaze me the dichotomy that exists in public opinion regarding cheaters.

There are those who say, “Everyone does it. It’s no big deal to cheat.” Yet watch as Tyco or Arthur Anderson flushes stock down the tube and they get sued and sent to court.

"Do what you must to get ahead in life" but when Martha Stewart lies about stock trades she gets 6 months in the cooler.

When we cheat our boss or our family we say, “No Harm, No Foul” but when Ken Lay destroys Enron employees retirement suddenly we cry “Foul!”

We’ll cheat a little here and a little there but when Sammy Sosa corks a bat it causes everyone to acknowledge that there is a difference between right and wrong. Suddenly moral relativism doesn’t make much sense.

The bottom line is that there is a real and understood line between right and wrong. We can avoid it and pretend it doesn’t apply to us, or our situation but, that doesn’t erase the line. Right is still right and wrong is still wrong.

Grandma said it best. Cheaters never win and winners never cheat.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Symbols Of Love

It is one of the most beautiful buildings in the world.

Built in 1648, some twenty thousand workers spent twenty-two years constructing the glistening white edifice in Agra, India. The
Taj Mahal stands 213 feet and is made entirely of white marble.

It was built by the Mogul Emperor Shah Jahan as a mausoleum for his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal at a cost of 32 million rupees ($750,000 in 1648!). It is quite possibly the world’s greatest physical symbol of love.

Symbols of love are big industry.

The U.S. Greeting Card Association estimates that approximately one billion Valentines Day cards are sent each year worldwide, making
Valentine’s Day the second largest card-sending holiday of the year behind Christmas. When you consider that a card costs somewhere between $1 and $3 each that’s a $3 Billion dollar industry every February!

When we want to say, “I Love You” we give the cheap card, the box of gamble chocolates and a stale rose from the freezer in Wal-Mart. Our traditions pale in comparison to expressions of love that were common in days before
Hershey’s Pot Of Gold.

It was the work of a Parisian painter named Marcel De Leclure. In 1875 he wrote a love letter to the object of his affection, Magdalene de Villalore. This love letter contained the phrase “I love you” written out 1,875,000 times; 1,000 times the calendar year.

Marcel De Leclure did not pen this letter with his own hand; he hired a scribe. He was so entranced with the sound of “I love you,” that he dictated it word for word and then had the hired man read it back to him word for word.

All-in-all, the phrase was uttered a total of 5,625,000 times before it reached its destination.

When I first read that I thought, “What a waste!” What a waste of time, money, energy and resources. Then I was forced to acknowledge that since the letter wasn’t written by me or to me I could not properly judge its worth.

Many have difficulty seeing the value in remembering or valuing the cross of Jesus Christ. It has become the symbol of a faith and representative of an individuals life. The cross was nothing if it was not a symbol of God’s love. It was a costly, extravagant expression of divine affection for mortal man.

Expressions of love have always been extravagant.

We write silly poems and promise the moon. We sing songs about swimming rivers and climbing mountains. We’ll spend money, lose sleep and work hard all for the expression of love because symbols of love don’t come cheap.

They never have.

Thursday, February 8, 2007

The Poisoning Effect Of Water

A woman from Sacramento, California who competed in a radio station’s contest to see how much water she could drink without going to the bathroom died of water intoxication, the coroner’s office said Saturday.

Jennifer Strange, 28, was found dead Friday in her suburban Rancho Cordova home hours after taking part in the “Hold Your Wee for a Wii” contest in which KDND 107.9 promised a Nintendo Wii video game system for the winner.

“She said to one of our supervisors that she was on her way home and her head was hurting her real bad,” said Laura Rios, one of Strange’s co-workers at Radiological Associates of Sacramento. “She was crying and that was the last that anyone had heard from her.”

It was not immediately know how much water Strange consumed.

A preliminary investigation found evidence “consistent with a water intoxication death,” said assistant Coroner Ed Smith.

John Geary, vice president and marketing manager for Entercom Sacramento, the station’s owner, said station personnel were stunned when they heard of Strange’s death.

“We are awaiting information that will help explain how this tragic event occurred,” he said.
Initially, contestants were handed eight-ounce bottles of water to drink every 15 minutes.

“They were small little half-pint bottles, so we thought it was going to be easy,” said fellow contestant James Ybarra of Woodland. “They told us if you don’t feel like you can do this, don’t put your health at risk.”

Ybarra said he quit after drinking five bottles. “My bladder couldn’t handle it anymore,” he added. After he quit, he said, the remaining contestants, including Strange, were given even bigger bottles to drink.

“I was talking to her and she was a nice lady,” Ybarra said. “She was telling me about her family and her three kids and how she was doing it for kids.” The story was reported on
Fox News Website on January 13th of 2007.

Water intoxication (also known as hyperhydration or water poisoning) is a potentially fatal disturbance in brain function that results when the normal balance of electrolytes in the body is pushed outside of safe limits by a very rapid intake of water.

It is the imbalance in intake and evacuation that causes normally beneficial, even necessary, water to have a poisoning effect.

How true the scriptures are when they remind us of the importance of keeping our lives in balance. Job prayed, “Let me be weighed in an even balance, that God may know mine integrity.” (
Job 31:6 ).

Some things that might normally be beneficial, even necessary for us, can quickly become detrimental if they are pushed out of balance.

James 1:8 warns us that, “A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.” (
James I:8 ).

If we were to examine our lives I believe we would find (at least I would) that often when undesirable circumstances present themselves they are the result not of fate or of chance but rather of an imbalance somewhere in the decision making process.

Working is not a damaging thing unless our concern for work causes our attention to our family to suffer.

Taking your ease is not a bad thing and can be quite therapuetic to a person and a body. Everyone needs rest. Yet if we’re too concerned with ease, and disconcerned with effort, our family will suffer of poverty.

Making and saving money is a wise activity to engage in yet if we place too much importance on money will it cause our character to suffer?

Being successful in your endeavors is a worthy goal. How many people, however, placed too much importance on success and lost their integrity in the process.

The greatest question we must ask ourselves is, “Have we placed too little concern on eternity and will our soul suffer?”

It is vital that we stirve, not for perfection or impeccability, but rather for balance in every facet of our life so that we can avoid being poisoned by water.

Friday, February 2, 2007


Even at the age of two, Tim insisted he was a girl trapped in a boy’s body.

So when puberty began to approach at the age of 12, he convinced his parents that something had to be done.

With their agreement, he became the youngest sex-change patient in the world, receiving hormone injections which arrested his male development.

Now, at 14, Tim has become Kim – a blue-eyed blonde with a growing bust line who is allowed to wear make-up on the weekends. She has no boyfriends at present but her parents say she is interested in what, now, is the opposite sex.

Her treatment, which has cost £18,000 ($40,000) so far, is being funded by the German taxpayer.

Psychiatrists treating her say she was an “exceptional case – a person clearly in the wrong body”, even though the decision to grant her wishes when she was so young is still the subject of intense debate.

Her identity and medical insurance cards have been changed to her new name and sex but she has not been placed at a different school in case of taunting from children who knew her as him in days gone by. According to her parents, “her friends fully accept her as she is”.

The family’s full identity has not been made public but Kim’s father, known as Lutz P, told Stern that as a child, Tim liked to play with Barbie dolls, enjoyed wearing dresses and, from the age of two, insisted that he was a girl.

Dr. Bern Meyenburg, the head of a clinic for children and adolescents with identity disturbances at Frankfurt University, concluded that the child was serious.

He wrote in his diagnosis: “Kim is a mentally well-developed child who appears happy and balanced. There is no doubt of the determined wish, which was already detectable since early childhood. It would have been very wrong to let Kim grow up to be a man.”

The sex change will not become complete for another four years because while German law does not forbid hormone treatment for minors, they must be 18 before gender-transforming surgery can be carried out.

Dr. Achim Wuesthof, who is treating Kim at a clinic in Hamburg, said, “To the best of my knowledge, Kim is the youngest sex-change patient in the world.” (
The Daily Mail UK)

Incredible. Absolutely Incredible.

I wonder if “Kim’s” parents would be quite so accommodating if she wanted to play in traffic? Would they allow her to skip bathing for weeks on end because she didn’t want to? Would they let her refuse to eat, drink or sleep? Do they feel obeying the law is important? Should she be able to drink, smoke and engage in sexual activity simply because she wants to?

It wasn’t that long ago they were picking out his clothes, tying his shoes and feeding him themselves yet they believe that at 12 years old he is old enough and, more importantly, mature enough to make a decision as vast as his gender!?

When he was 2, according to his father, he already knew he was a girl.

I have a 2 year old daughter. She thinks she’s Dora The Explorer.

Children do not need accommodating, compliant adults raising them. They need parents.

Parents are to provide, guide and care for the needs of their children. Children need the maturity and experience of their parents to direct them into wise and safe decisions.

A spineless, obliging parent is nothing but a detriment to the healthy development and well being of a child.

The parents of this child are not noble for the actions they have taken; they are reckless.