Happiness Does Not Just Happen

Happiness and moral duty are inseparably connected.  George Washington

Have you ever known anyone who was waiting for happiness to just "happen"? They wait for their ship to come in or their number to come up or for Mr. or Miss "Right" to just show up on their doorstep one day. The sad fact of the matter is that ships do not usually come in, that most people don't win the lottery and true love does not happen without some virtuous effort.

I heard a father describe a conversation his daughter had with a young man who wanted to take her out. When she declined his offer for a date he asked why. When she told him that she knew that he drank and she did not drink he asked, "Then, what do you do for fun?" Her response was classic: She said, "I get up in the morning and I look at myself in the mirror, unashamed." Now, that's fun!

Years later, that virtuous young lady married a nice young man and they had a wonderful family. They experienced true love and true happiness, because of the truth that George Washington recognized over 200 years ago: Happiness and moral duty are inseparably connected. Good marriages do not just happen any more than good people just happen. Moral duty is hard! But, have you ever noticed, that it is nearly always easier than the consequences one must eventually pay for ignoring virtue?

Lasting happiness is a byproduct of virtue. This may sound old-fashioned, narrow-minded, and out of touch with reality, but who cares. Personally I like being happy, and if that makes me out of step with modern man then that's okay. We have all made our share of mistakes in our quest for happiness, but we have a Father in Heaven who truly wants us to be happy and He has designed a plan for us to accomplish that goal. It requires effort and sacrifice and an occasional denying ourselves of instant gratification - but it works. Besides, did we think that something as tremendous as eternal happiness would be easy?

I know that there is nothing better than for men to be happy and do good while they live. 

Ecclesiastes 3:12, NIV

 

Return to Washington... and Truth

True or False: The Constitution states there must be a separation of church and state.

Answer: False 

Let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion... reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.

George Washington (from his farewell address)

Isn't it interesting how people will believe a lie long before they will believe the truth. Most people would be shocked to learn that the words quoted above came from our nation's first president. They would also be shocked to learn that the Constitution does not attempt to "protect" the state from the church. In fact, if the truth be known, the framers of the Constitution were far more concerned about protecting religion from the state.

Did you know that when Thomas Jefferson was President of the school board of the Washington D.C. public schools, that the Bible was used as a text book? This was over a decade after the Constitution. The document that he was so instrumental in creating. The document that is somehow supposed to forbid Bibles in school or prayers in school or any mention of our Lord's name in school, (other than in vain - this, our modern scholars assure us, is protected).  

Why is that, I wonder? Perhaps it's an accident of education... or perhaps it's the purpose of education.

You see, most schools don't even address Washington's Farewell Address, nor do most teach what constitutes the Constitution. So we end up with a student population filled to the brim with the knowledge of political correctness, but totally in the dark when it comes to the truth of the critical role that religion played in the founding of our nation. As a result, most students think that prayer to the Almighty in school is forbidden, while cursing with His holy name is perfectly okay. And we wonder why our nation is in the state that it is in.

So, what are parents to do? Perhaps they should start with teaching the truth. Too many parents think that this is the duty of the teacher, but the fact is that while many of our teachers would love to be able to teach these things, their hands are tied. So the teaching of these important truths will have to be done by parents, if they are to be taught at all. 

"The truth will set you free"

 Jesus (as recorded in John 8:32)

 

 

Freedom

“Liberty cannot be preserved without general knowledge among the people.” John Adams

I am often at a loss as to why people are so seemingly willing to give up their freedoms. Maybe it’s because of the way I was raised. I remember the seatbelt campaigns of the late 60’s and early 70’s. My Dad warned at the time that it wouldn’t be long before it was a law that you had to wear your seatbelt whenever you were in the car. I didn’t think much of his “prophesy” at the time, but now I do. Now it’s hundreds of dollars for no seatbelt, and multiple times that for improper child restraint.

What’s the big deal, you might be wondering. Aren’t seat belts good? Aren’t child seats wonderful safety features? Doesn’t it make sense to wear your seat belt when traveling? Yes, yes and yes, is my response – but that’s not the point. The point is that Americans feel that their government has the right to force you to wear your seat belt, and the right to charge you money when not doing so. They forfeited their personal obligation (take care of yourself) and common sense (buckle up for safety) as well as their general knowledge of constitutional restraints (limited government), by allowing big brother to step in and decide for us… and it takes away our freedom to live and choose as we see best for our own families.

Al Capone had a similar scam in the early part of the last century. His boys would sell businesses “fire” insurance. What’s so bad about that? Well, Capone wasn’t insuring businesses against loss in case of a fire. He was extorting money from American businessmen: If they didn’t buy the insurance, they generally had a fire within the next day or two.

If you don’t think that giving up freedoms in a minor area like seat belts is a big deal, then how about this: How about no prayers in public schools? How about no Bibles in the work place if you are a boss? How about being forced to take part in promoting sexual immorality if you bake cakes or sell flowers or take pictures or make T-shirts? How about being forced to buy “insurance”? It was good enough for Al and the boys, why shouldn’t it be good enough for all the President’s men? It goes something like this: You buy our insurance, and we won’t fine you or put you in prison!

When you start trading your freedoms… for freedom, you start down a slippery slope towards a deep pit that can be very difficult to climb out of. Some days I fear that we are already in that very pit.

“They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves to depravity.” I Peter 2:19, NIV

That’s the bad news about the current laws of our land that are rapidly choking any freedoms we as Americans used to enjoy. The good news is that there is a perfect set of laws that promise a freedom that wicked men can never take away.

“But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom,and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it –he will be blessed in what he does.” James 1:25, NIV

America Is Still Great

If we ever forget that we are one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under.

Ronald Reagan

I have been listening to the news of late. We hear of an abortion doctor who has been accused of what all abortion doctors have always done - murder children. We hear of our right to bear arms under attack by the government, as if they really didn't understand that this right was put in place to protect from tyrannical leaders instead as some sort of boon granted by a benevolent dictator. We hear the politically correct passing laws about things that God decided on long ago.

If we are not careful we will think that America is not great anymore - but it is. You see our wicked leaders are not America - they don't even like it. Our abortion doctors are not America - they are killing as many future Americans as possible. The politically correct are not America - they are insignificant human beings vainly trying to be significant.

Real America is a nation that is funded by men and women with the Christian work ethic, not by those who would dare to live off of the generosity of others. Real America is, as our founders suggested, a noble experiment in democracy, not a nation to be ashamed of as many of those in prominent positions would suggest. Real America is a land of decent Christians, not a land of small, hypocritical and self-righteous bigots who fail to see their own hatred toward anyone with different beliefs.

Real America is one nation under God. It is in the process of being hijacked by perverse and hateful persons, but they are no more the rightful heirs to Real America than the terrorists are the rightful owners of the planes they take by force.

Real America will come back because real Americans will eventually do the right thing. We have been temporarily diverted by skillful politicians whose main weapons are to divide and conquer, but real Americans will eventually see through their schemes. The fact is that now, right now, real Americans are getting really sick and really tired of those who pretend to love America but who, in fact, really despise this land.

Ronald Reagan was right when he said we will be a nation "gone under" if we ever cease to be one nation under God, but I don't believe that time has yet come. In fact, I believe that the Real America is still present under the debris left by those who claim to represent us.

One thing may be helpful to keep in mind: Fools always trash their own homes but eventually abandon them when they think they have looted everything of value. In this case, they will only take the money. They will leave behind those things they deem to have no value... virtue, decency and the greatest treasure of all: God.

And when they are through, decent and virtuous people will be left behind to pick up the pieces of this indestructible, noble experiment once again: One Nation Under God!

Happy the people whose God is the Lord.

Psalms 144:14, RSV

Hatred Belittles the Soul

"I shall allow no man to belittle my soul by making me hate him."

Booker T. Washington

 

I don't know about you, but I am getting more than a little concerned about the use of race in what passes for our modern day America. Every time a person of one color does something to a person of another color, somebody of the offended color gets up to a national microphone to attack those of the offending color.

 

Just following all the colors is making me dizzy!

 

Booker T. Washington came out of slavery and lived in a segregated nation during the oppressive Jim Crow era. There were many people who hated him without even knowing him, simply because of the color of his skin. But instead of allowing that unfairness of life to slow him down, Booker T. Washington used it as a motivation to help end that unfairness. He didn't do it by wearing a T-shirt that proclaimed, "I can't breath", nor did he destroy and steal other people's property while chanting, "Black lives matter". Instead, with the help of black people and white people, Booker T. Washington responded to the unfairness of life with the simple goal of educating people of his race and encouraging them to get into business for themselves so that they could help bring an end to that unfairness.

 

And, most importantly, while he set this noble task, he was determined not to waste his time with hating those who were doing him wrong because he knew that the hatred of others always results in the belittling of one's soul.

 

God did not create us to be people with little souls. That was true in the days of slavery, it was true in the days that Christ walked the earth, and it is true for us now.

 

Hatred belittles the soul! The sooner we learn that lesson, the happier we will be.

 

"Beloved, let us love one another; for love is of God; and everyone that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God, for God is love."

I John 4:7-8, KJV