“Sir, We Need Your Permission To…”

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It is a fear of every parent. All of us who have children at home and those of us who have children who have their own families dread a call informing us of a serious injury and/or illness.

A few years ago, a friend of mine received one of those calls. His seventeen-year-old daughter had been involved in an automobile accident. 

Fortunately, the injuries she sustained did not appear to be serious, but the doctors wanted to make sure. The father was told that he had to give his consent before his daughter could be treated.

Of course, he quickly gave his consent. The appropriate testing and treatment was done. His daughter recovered.

Please think with me a moment. Can you think of any procedure for which an “under-age” girl does not need parental consent and/or notification? Can you think of such a procedure that will definitely result in death? 

Are you aware of the fact that some of our states will allow a girl who is under the age of eighteen to abort a child she is carrying without any requirement to notify her parents and/or get their consent? Are you aware of the fact that there is a growing drumbeat of support for making this the policy of our entire nation? 

Interestingly, and alarmingly enough, the website of Planned Parenthood provides information for a variety of “work-arounds” for young ladies who happen to live in a state that requires parental permission/notification. I suppose one should expect that from our nation’s largest abortion provider. 

Is it just me, or is there something terribly wrong with this sort of “logic?” What kind of sense does it make to demand parental permission to treat what appears to be a relatively minor injury while, at the same time, allowing an unborn child’s life to be terminated with no such demands or restrictions?

I pray that you will think about that.

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Episode 43: Making Memories in the Midst of a Busy Life (with Dale Jenkins) [Podcast]

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Families are busy, but how can we remain busy and active, yet build memories for our children? On today’s podcast, Dale Jenkins joins Adam and shares five fantastic points on how to be intentional with our time, as well as with building memories for our children.

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More about Dale Jenkins

The Jenkins Institute

Follow Dale on Twitter

Spring Meadows Church of Christ

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To subscribe to A Legacy of Faith by email for free click here.

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Music Credit

Opening theme: “Josie Has the Upper Hand” by Josh Woodward

Closing theme: “Afterglow” by Josh Woodward

Where Love Abides

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I grew up in a very small home – one living room, a kitchen, two bedrooms, and a small bath. There were four of us living in that space which was probably, at most, one thousand square feet. I don’t recall feeling cramped or poor, but I’m sure we were at times. What I do recall are meals around a small table, a warm bed with clean sheets, listening to music on the record player in the living room, and laughter as we sat and talked with one another.

Jim grew up in a home which was about the same size as the one where I grew up, but it was a much older home. Since he had no brothers or sisters, there were only three people in their home. I have never heard him talk in a negative way about his childhood home. When I began dating Jim and visited in his home, I recall a happy place that was always neat, clean and comfortable.

Last week our children and their families came to our new, smaller home to spend a few days with us and enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday. I’m ashamed to tell you how much I worried about not having enough space for everyone. 

You see, four months ago we sold our 5 bedroom, 3 bath home and downsized to a 3 bedroom, 2 bath home. We went from 2600 square feet down to just under 1600 square feet. I was convinced that our time together with our family could not possibly be as much fun as it had been before because we would all be crammed together in that small home – eleven of us.

I was so wrong. I learned some valuable lessons.

A sunroom turned into a bunkhouse where all the grandkids sleep on blow up mattresses is lots of fun and a memory they will always have to share.

Thoughtful children who planned a fun program of performances by each of the children and grandchildren for our enjoyment are so precious to us no matter where they take place.

Laughter sounds great everywhere.

Games are just as much fun whether they are played in a big house or a small one.

Singing sounds just as beautiful no matter what size the room is.

Quiet, late-night conversation among the adults is just as precious no matter where it takes place.

A daughter and a daughter-in-law are just as helpful in a smaller kitchen as they were in a larger one.

I need to always remember my roots and the lessons I learned in that small childhood home.

It is very important to be grateful for that with which we have been blessed – large or small.

Where love abides, the size of the home doesn’t matter.

“…foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.”  Matthew 8:20

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Yes, Pro- Choice IS Pro- Abortion

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Recently, a photo made the rounds on social media (especially Facebook) that showed total ignorance of the whole pro-choice movement. The main part of the pictured stated, “Pro-Choice Does Not Mean Pro-Abortion.” The picture’s caption then stated, “It simply means that it’s none of our business what a woman decides.”

Of course, the picture has been shared and “liked” thousands of times. After all, who are we to tell a woman what to do with her body? How can I possibly tell a woman that she should–or should not–terminate the pregnancy when I do not know her experience (either in how she became pregnant or in how this baby might/would alter her life)?

To many, this seems like a good argument. They say that they are not pro-abortion; rather, they are just pro-choice. They are not necessarily for or against abortion, but a woman should be allowed to choose for herself. It’s her body, after all.

I’ll say it bluntly: this is nothing short of cowardice!

By refusing to make a stand for the baby inside the womb, those who are “just” pro-choice are absolutely pro-abortion. The baby cannot defend his/her rights, so someone else must stand up for that child and defend him/her.

Let’s turn this to another argument to see the logic (or lack thereof). Let’s say that a local school decided to have prayer before a school assembly and I thought that was totally wrong. However, I never said anything about it. Would I be shocked that the assembly still opened with a prayer?

I’d be foolish to be shocked–or even upset–for one simple reason: I didn’t stand up clearly for what I believed! (Obviously, I wish that every school function started with prayer. No emails, please!)

We have turned our culture into one where the ultimate sin is offending someone and the ultimate “good” is to just not take a side. By doing so, however, we are taking sides. To not stand up and speak is to take a side. In the case of abortion, not taking sides costs us about 1,000,000 lives every year.

The book of Revelation teaches us that, among others, the “cowardly” are among those who “will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur” (Revelation 21:8). The reason is simple: by not standing for something, we allow it go on unabated.

Of course, Christians should not resort to violence or insult to stand up, but stand up we must! You see, the blood of almost 60,000,000 babies (let that number sink in for a second) since Roe vs. Wade is not only on the hands of the pro-abortion crowd. The blood of those babies is also on the hands of those who refused to stand up for those precious children.

 

We need more people with a backbone. In the abortion debate, there simply is no middle ground. One is either for life, or that person is for murder. It is not possible to say that one is pro-choice, but is not pro-abortion.

By not choosing a side, one has chosen. And the choice is death for about a million children every year.

Cowardice looks a lot like bloodshed.

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AUTHOR: Adam Faughn

Universalism and Social Media

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We are in a time in human history in which the influence and acceptance of Universalism as at an all-time high. The basic idea behind Universalism is that religion as a whole is a human quality that exists in every human being. Thus, regardless of your beliefs and practices, whatever your religion happens to be, it is acceptable and it ought to be embraced with an attitude of inclusiveness.

The basic problem with this viewpoint is that God, although wanting to be all-inclusive (desiring to save all mankind – 1 Tim. 2:3-4), is in reality quite exclusive. God chose Jesus alone to be man’s only way to come to the Father (John 14:6). He chose the church to be the saved, and nobody outside the church (Eph. 5:23, Eph. 1:22-23). He chose the Bible to be authoritative and the only standard by which we can please Him and be ultimately judged (Matt. 4:4; 2 Tim. 3:16-17; John 12:48).

But our culture refuses to follow God’s way. On a regular basis, we are pressured to accept beliefs and practices that defy God and which are directly opposed to Him and His word. We are influenced by peers and multitudes of religious groups to unite in the name of love and to completely disregard God’s commandments in order to do so. The minute we refuse to accommodate their requests we are labeled as unloving, judgmental, and are called modern-day Pharisees.

I have noticed that within the realm of social media this is especially true. Over the past few weeks, I have been invited to participate in events over the holidays that are being touted as the solution to the need for unification and hope. But by the very nature of what is being suggested–in reading the Bible I can clearly see why, that for the sake of my conscience and respecting God’s wishes–I cannot participate.

The devil would love to see people cast the authority of God’s word aside in the name of unity and charity. He would enjoy watching the Lord’s church and its people lose their distinctiveness. He loves universalism. He is the author of it. “Do what you want to do!” “Believe what you want to believe!” “Let’s all have a group hug in the town square!” These are his pleas. And they feel good and they taste good and so they work. And they make everybody else happy and you don’t have to be seen as non-cooperative.

This is why we are where we are. Our nation has no vision and no true leadership that stands for anything morally or ethically. The church has been bombarded with this mentality for so long that many once-Biblical churches are changing their beliefs and practices to accommodate the world and its current social feelings. Individual Christians are becoming soft and their respect for the Bible and their study of the Bible is diminishing. But as long as we are getting along with everyone on Facebook then, apparently, we must have the spirit of God.

It is time that God’s people took a stand for what His word teaches. It may be unpopular in the world and in the community. But we can stand for truth without sacrificing compassion and love to do so. We may not make every event and support every cause. We may be labeled as unloving and intolerant. But those of the church are those who are literally “called out” of the world. It is past time for us to make the distinction between living in the world and being like the world.

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Photo background credit: Rosaura Ochoa on Creative Commons

Which Is the Greater Tragedy?

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“Brought forth to the place of execution, he was tied to the stake, strangled by the hangman,
and afterwards consumed with fire, at the town of Vilvorde, A.D. 1536…”

Who was this awful criminal?

What horrible crime did he commit against society?

The man’s name was William Tyndale. The quote above is found in Foxe’s Book of Martyrs (p. 184). It is a portion of the account of Mr. Tyndale’s brutal execution. This execution took place because he translated the New Testament into the English language. He wanted the common people of his day to have access to God’s Word.

It will not be too many years before five centuries will have passed since Tyndale’s execution. Today, Bibles can be found all over the world and in many languages.

The last figures I found indicate that the entire Bible has been translated into 531 languages. Along with that, the same source reports that portions of the Bible have been translated into 2,883 languages. (I honestly did not know there were even that many languages.)

How many copies of the Bible do you have in your home?

How many different Bible programs, apps, etc. do you have on your computers, tablets, and smartphones?

The circumstances surrounding the execution make that event an even greater tragedy than is indicated above. William Tyndale’s execution was the result of people who would consider themselves to be very religious and staunch defenders of what they would consider “the faith.”

Can you imagine that? Can you think of anything more tragic than people who would call themselves “Christians” trying to silence the message of the Bible by brutal, horrific force?

What about this? What about somebody who would claim to wear the same name today, but silence the message of the Bible by neglecting to read what is so readily available?

Which is the greater tragedy?

Think about it!

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Episode 42: Christmas Gift Ideas to Encourage Family Devotionals [Podcast]

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Do you have a family on your Christmas list that you want to encourage with a gift? How about encouraging them with a Christmas gift that will help them with their family devotional.

On today’s program, Adam shares several ideas of gifts that will encourage a family in their home devotionals. These gifts are inexpensive, but will be treasured.

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RESOURCES

Links are to Amazon (affiliate links) unless otherwise noted

The One Year Children’s Bible

“Family Devotional” Object lesson CD-Roms (Kaio Publications)

Game Plan by Joe Wells

One Year of Dinner Table Devotions and Discussion Starters by Nancy Guthrie

Five-Minute Devotions for Children: Celebrating God’s World as a Family by Pamela Kennedy

Do Hard Things by Alex and Brett Harris

4-pack of three-ring binders (to help start a “do-it-yourself” devotional book)

A Legacy of Faith Store (free printables)

More from A Legacy of Faith

To subscribe to A Legacy of Faith by email for free (and get a free eBook) click here.

Subscribe to the podcast on iTunes

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Visit the show archives

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Music Credit

Opening theme: “Josie Has the Upper Hand” by Josh Woodward

Closing theme: “Afterglow” by Josh Woodward

Happy Thanksgiving!

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The Altitude of Gratitude

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I’ve said it. I’ve heard it said countless times. And, for some reason, nearly every time I have heard it or said it myself, it seems to be spoken in a way that makes it sound cool. It’s the phrase “attitude of gratitude.”

It’s catchy. It rhymes.

And it is important. It is a powerful thing that we cultivate that attitude in our lives; an attitude that shows thanksgiving more and more often. It is a difficult attitude to have on a constant basis, but it leads to something even greater.

It leads to the altitude of gratitude.

We never soar higher in our lives than when we are people who are regularly grateful. People who are filled with thanksgiving are more humble. They shine grace. They get rewarded in life (though that is not what they are seeking). They regularly have healthier relationships.

And they have that peace that passes all understanding, promised to all true believers (Philippians 4:6-7).

While being grateful is its own reward, if you struggle with cultivating an attitude of gratitude, remember where it can take you. You will rise higher in the depths of your soul if you will build that thankful spirit.

You’ll rise in the altitude of gratitude, and soar ever higher.

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AUTHOR: Adam Faughn

The Universal Church

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As you begin to read this short article, please do me a favor. Please do not think in any way that I believe that I know more than other people just because I have been out of the country. Please do not think that I am prejudiced against any person in this part of the country. Please understand that this article is being written out of a pure heart and sincere love for God and His people. With these things in mind, I would like to address some problems that exist in the minds and hearts of many Christians.

1. Unfortunately, there are many Christians who do not have a global view of the church. They may not even have a respect for the needs to establish the church on a national level. Sometimes we are limiting our focus to the local congregation. Although God has organized the local church and has commanded us to be a part of it, we are supposed to have the best interest of the souls of all people in every country in the world in our hearts. I have heard many Christians over the last few years asking why we are still going into other countries with the gospel. The reason is simple: Jesus said, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature…” (Mark 16:15-16). He also said, “Go there and make disciples of all the nations…” (Matt. 28:19). The great commission has not changed. The entire world will always be in desperate need of the good news of Jesus Christ.

2. Unfortunately, there are many Christians who would be uncomfortable in the true church just because it might be in a different setting. While recently across the world, I was blessed to worship with people of a different nationality, different skin color, different language, and different culture. Their social customs were not always easy to adjust to. The buildings they met in were not as comfortable. But I want to tell you that I was spiritually blessed beyond measure. To see the Bible being obeyed in the same manner by a group of individuals across the world is a reminder of the power of God and the truth of His Word. The building, the pews, the temperature, and all of the physical blessings are absolutely nothing more than facilitators. The core of the matter is the truth of the doctrine and the humility of the hearts that have assembled to obey it. If you have never worshiped with brethren across the globe – oh what you have missed!

3. Unfortunately, there are many Christians who are not concerned about the lost enough to say anything. If a truck were bearing down on you, about to run you over, at some point I would be forced to jump in and push you out of the way. I would have to hate you a great deal to do nothing. The road to hell is wide. But we don’t want to offend anyone, so we are willing to let people who have been created in God’s image travel on it. We ought to have the mind of Christ, who left the comfort of heaven and emptied Himself to die on the cross (Phil. 2:5-8). I have recently determined in my own life a recommitment to evangelism. I am going to take some risks in my relationships because I love people too much to be popular with everyone by remaining silent.

People need the Lord. I am one of them. Whether in our community or across the world, without the blood of Jesus, there is not a person on this earth that will enter heaven. So for those who live next door and for those who see a different set of stars than I do, I am going to do my part.

“And He commanded us to preach to the people, and to testify that it is He who was ordained by God to be Judge of the living and the dead.” ~ Acts 10:42

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