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Monthly Archives: January 2016

Monopoly of Lies – A Preacher’s Position the Lottery

Pastor Perry Noble recently posted an article on buying a lottery ticket.  Well, not A lottery ticket; he bought ten.  Then, he spends his time in the piece defending his purchase of the lottery tickets because, hey, sombody’s got to win.  He may be technically right; somebody will win the jackpot, but millions and millions of people lose with every ping pong ball pulled.  You can read his piece here.  This defense of the lottery is uniformed and completely ignorant of who the lottery attacks and damages.  Also, his metaphors and illustration are appalling.

Pastor Noble does ask that we spare him the gambling lectures, so I will.  First, he says is “Is gambling bad. Yep, but sex can be well!! Do we get rid of that too?”  The answer to that Pastor Noble is yes!  The bible gives clear guidlines and has a design for the celebration and enjoyment of sex.  Sex done in God’s design is wonderful.  Read Song of Songs.  Sex done outside of God’s design is damaging, and yes, people would be blessed by getting rid of sex outside of God’s design.  I am off point, but I am always bothered by manipulative metaphors which is all that is.

Next, he states that the impoverished people that get into financial trouble with the lottery have a deeper issue, and if they did not blow their money on the lottery, they would blow their money on something else.  My answer is yes, like bread, milk, and diapers.  People are not going to buy comic books and board games when their kids are starving.  They buy escape through drugs, alcohol, and lottery tickets.  I have never had a person in my office at church asking for financial aid because they blew their pay check on baseball cards.  I have with alcohol, drugs, gambling including lottery tickets.

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Why I’m Southern Baptist – It’s About the Money

With all of the spiritual and religious choices that permeate our society, It can be hard to choose which faith, which church, which denomination, which variety, will speak to you and your family. I want to take a moment and share the direction my wife and I chose for our family. I also, want to share the reasons why we chose this particular direction for our family. My wife and I are Christians, and we choose to be a part of the Southern Baptist, a denomination of Christianity. The Southern Baptist are a collection of like minded baptist congregations that pool our resources to cooperate in mission and ministry for the gospel of Jesus Christ. Currently, I am the pastor and we attend Sunnyside Baptist Church in Toccoa Georgia.

Have you ever watched a big time free agent athlete sign the one hundred million dollar contract? The athlete attends a news conference to be handed a jersey where fifty cameras take hundreds of pictures. The athlete then sits in front of multiple video cameras as says, “This is not about the money. I love this city, this team, these coaches…yada, yada, yada.” While the athlete is speaking everyone in the room is thinking, it’s one hundred million dollars…it is most certainly about the money. I always hope one of these athletes will one day be honest and say, “Did you count all those zeroes? I’d play on the moon for that many zeroes.”

Well let me share freely and honestly, the first reason why we choose to be a part of the Southern Baptist is all about the money. When I say it is about the money, I do not mean the salary that I make; although, I am very grateful for my church that pays me to do what I love. The money I am talking about is the money we give to our denominational leadership that they in turn use for ministry.

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Hit and Miss – A Preacher’s Position on Gun Control Executive Order

IMG_7154I watched President Obama’s speech regarding his impending Executive Order(s) dealing with Gun Control. There were aspects that I thought were powerful and other moments where I felt he was missing the target.  Now, before all the anti-gun control folks start patting me on the back, hold on just a minute. I have to apply and reapply for a license to drive a car. I have to go through comprehensive testing to drive a bus or motorcycle. I have to show my drivers license and sign my name at the pharmacy to purchase an over the counter medicine for my stuffy head. I cannot even buy prescription glasses for myself without a recent eye exam. I think all of those restrictions are reasonable, by the way. I think it is absolutely nuts that I can anonymously purchase a firearm at a gun show or online! Not to mention some of the ridiculous weaponry available that are far beyond hunting and self defense. I am not for taking away all guns, but I am for being reasonble.  Anyway, I am now a little off point.

Let me begin by what the President got right. In his speech, he promised more money for Mental Healthcare. I think this was great. Not only do we need Mental Healthcare more available for individuals and families, we need to remove the stigma of Mental Healthcare from our society. Mental Health issues should not be viewed any different than Physical Health issues. A person suffering from an anxiety disorder should not have a different stigma attached to him or her than a person suffering from Parkinson’s. I hope the President’s support of Mental Healthcare will be a big step toward bringing Mental Health from the shadows of the medical profession and into the mainstream. I hope that visiting your psychiatrist will be no more shocking than visiting your podiatrist.

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