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Repeal the ObamaCare individual mandate
Stop the NSA's warrantless spying on Americans
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Indiana Lawmakers Surprised To Learn They Banned Driving With Cell Phones
Nanny of the Month, July 2015
by Ted Balaker
Many young Indiana drivers were surprised to learn the state had banned them from using cellphones while driving. The lawmakers who voted for the ban were also surprised.
“I learned it on the news, but I didn’t remember that happening,” said Rep. Dan Leonard (R-Huntington).
Turns out at least three other representatives who voted for House Bill 1394 didn't realize it included a provision prohibiting drivers under age 21 from calling while driving (even with a hands-free device). The bill also banned GPS and even listening to Pandora. Dialing 911 is about the only thing you can still do in your car with a phone that's still legal.
Here’s hoping the lawmakers who voted for the bill pause to consider the potential unintended consequences—for example, young drivers may opt to text, a method of communicating that's more easily hidden but also more dangerous.
Follow Nanny of the Month on Twitter (@NannyoftheMonth) and submit your nominees for next month!
Nanny of the Month is written and produced by Ted Balaker (@tedbalaker). Edited by R. Campopiano.
In a speech that was given a mere two weeks after Islamic jihadists attacked America, the former HP chief executive officer gave a speech on technology, business and our way of life. She concluded her speech with the following:
There was once a civilization that was the greatest in the world.
It was able to create a continental super-state that stretched from ocean to ocean, and from northern climes to tropics and deserts. Within its dominion lived hundreds of millions of people, of different creeds and ethnic origins.
One of its languages became the universal language of much of the world, the bridge between the peoples of a hundred lands. Its armies were made up of people of many nationalities, and its military protection allowed a degree of peace and prosperity that had never been known. The reach of this civilization's commerce extended from Latin America to China, and everywhere in between.
And this civilization was driven more than anything, by invention. Its architects designed buildings that defied gravity. Its mathematicians created the algebra and algorithms that would enable the building of computers, and the creation of encryption. Its doctors examined the human body, and found new cures for disease. Its astronomers looked into the heavens, named the stars, and paved the way for space travel and exploration.
Its writers created thousands of stories. Stories of courage, romance and magic. Its poets wrote of love, when others before them were too steeped in fear to think of such things.
When other nations were afraid of ideas, this civilization thrived on them, and kept them alive. When censors threatened to wipe out knowledge from past civilizations, this civilization kept the knowledge alive, and passed it on to others.
While modern Western civilization shares many of these traits, the civilization I'm talking about was the Islamic world from the year 800 to 1600, which included the Ottoman Empire and the courts of Baghdad, Damascus and Cairo, and enlightened rulers like Suleiman the Magnificent.
If man is not to do more harm than good in his efforts to improve the social order, he will have to learn that in this, as in all other fields where essential complexity of an organized kind prevails, he cannot acquire the full knowledge which would make mastery of the events possible.
If man is not to do more harm than good in his efforts to improve the social order, he will have to learn that in this, as in all other fields where essential complexity of an organized kind prevails, he cannot acquire the full knowledge which would make mastery of the events possible. He will therefore have to use what knowledge he can achieve, not to shape the results as the craftsman shapes his handiwork, but rather to cultivate a growth by providing the appropriate environment, in the manner in which the gardener does this for his plants. There is danger in the exuberant feeling of ever growing power which the advance of the physical sciences has engendered and which tempts man to try, "dizzy with success", to use a characteristic phrase of early communism, to subject not only our natural but also our human environment to the control of a human will. The recognition of the insuperable limits to his knowledge ought indeed to teach the student of society a lesson of humility which should guard him against becoming an accomplice in men's fatal striving to control society - a striving which makes him not only a tyrant over his fellows, but which may well make him the destroyer of a civilization which no brain has designed but which has grown from the free efforts of millions of individuals.
There is a reason the church in America has lost ground in recent years.
It is not because of our stand for morality and righteousness, although our hypocrisy has greatly damaged our credibility and lessened our authority.
It is not because of our claim that salvation comes through Jesus alone, although our failure to live out the radical implications of that claim has blunted the force of our message.
No, the biggest reason the church in America has lost so much ground in recent years is because we have become the Church of the Status-Quo, the Assembly of the Content and Well Fed, drifting aimlessly with the tide rather than being the revolutionary society we were called to be.
As I wrote in 1989, like the church of Sardis in Revelation 3, “we have become the ‘perfect model of inoffensive Christianity’ (G. B. Caird), ‘having a reputation of being alive, yet being dead’ (Rev. 3:1). Like Sardis, we have so come to terms with our pagan environment that we provoke almost no opposition and make virtually no impact. And like Sardis, situated high on a mountain rock, we have felt safe and secure in this world.
“The fact is, we have gotten so fat that we can’t even get out the church doors to touch the world. Our contemporary gospel has bred complacency instead of compassion, success instead of sacrifice, prestige instead of prayer. We no longer ask what we can do for Him, but rather what He can do for us.”
What has become of our holy desperation? What has become of our spiritual fervor? What has become of our sacred calling to serve the Lord by life or by death (Philippians 1:20-21)?
Jesus came to launch a revolutionary movement with the ultimate goal of replacing the kingdoms of this world with the kingdom of God (just as we pray in the words of the Lord’s Prayer), turning worldly values upside down (see Luke 16:15) and calling us to leave all and follow Him (see Luke 14:33).
But when we become the Church of the Status-Quo, the complacent majority rather than the persecuted minority, we lose our revolutionary edge, becoming like the world rather than changing the world.
That is our great, great challenge: As the gospel spreads and the church grows, how do we maintain our revolutionary focus? How do we continue to live in the light of eternity in the midst of material prosperity? How do we avoid carnal complacency when everything is going well?
In his book The Different Drum, M. Scott Peck commented, “If a so-called religious belief is not radical, we must suspect that it is mere superstition. The profession of a religious belief is a lie if it does not significantly determine one’s economic, political and social behaviour.”
How do our contemporary sermons line up with a standard like this?
Journalist and author A. G. Gardiner once wrote, “When a prophet is accepted and deified, his message is lost. The prophet is only useful so long as he is stoned as a public nuisance, calling us to repentance, disturbing our comfortable routines, breaking our respectable idols, shattering our sacred conventions.”
To a certain extent, this applies to the whole church, although to be sure, as followers of Jesus, we are to be known for our love, for our care for the poor and needy, and for our message of hope and forgiveness, along with our prophetic, confrontational stance.
But the principle remains the same: When we are accepted by the world and our message becomes innocuous, we lose our effectiveness.
In his book Revolution and the Christian Faith, the late Vernon C. Grounds, former chancellor of Denver Theological Seminary, said, “A Christian who . . . becomes a revolutionary will serve as a revolutionary catalyst in the Church; and by the multiplication of revolutionized Christians, the Church will become a revolutionary catalyst in society; and if society is sufficiently revolutionized, a revolution of violence will no more be needed than a windmill in a world of atomic energy.”
That is the kind of revolution Jesus came to inaugurate, and that is the kind of revolution that will impact and change the world until He returns. And that’s why, although I’m grieved over the current state of affairs in America and mourn over the state of much of the Church, I’m encouraged at the same time, knowing that the growing opposition to the gospel in our country is a blessing in disguise.
It is waking us up from our slumber, reminding us that we are in this world but not of it, and calling us afresh to lead revolutionary lives, following in the countercultural footsteps of our Master and Lord.
The German theologian Gerhard Lohfink once wrote, “It is true that Jesus never called for a political, revolutionary transformation of Jewish society. Yet the repentance which he demanded as a consequence of his preaching of the reign of God sought to ignite within the people of God a movement in comparison to which the normal type of revolution is insignificant.”
In response to this, I say on with the Jesus revolution.
We have been born (and born-again) for such a time as this.
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