Lisa and I went for a drive the other day. I wasn’t on call, and the morning was sunny, clear, and brimming with hope. We needed to get out of the house, so we loaded our son’s dog Dude into the truck and hit the road.
We drove up Casper Mountain Road, through Beartrap Meadow and over the backside of the mountain. We came to a junction of two roads we’d driven before: we could go straight and up to Muddy Mountain, or turn right and wind through gorgeous countryside and back to Casper the long way around.
The third option was a little two-track road to our left. We had no idea where it went, but we both felt adventurous and we had time, so we turned left.
On the GPS, it looked like this road would eventually lead us back to civilization on the east side of Casper. Twelve miles of muddy, sometimes scary, low-4×4 terrain later, we still weren’t sure. But we came around a bend after going through a beautiful mountainous pass and were stopped in our tracks at the view.
Gosnell (Regnery Publishing , 2017)
This is among the most disturbing books I’ve ever read
Kermit Gosnell was convicted in 2013 on three counts of homicide- three babies he tried to abort but who were born alive in his clinic in Philadelphia. Gosnell cut the babies’ spinal cords with scissors and kept their feet in jars for mementos. Although he was only convicted of three murders, police found over forty dead babies in storage containers- some of them cardboard boxes, old soda bottles, etc.- and had witness reports of possibly thousands more murdered babies Gosnell killed in his clinic over his 40-plus-year career.
The story is shocking, tragic, and unbelievable. But there’s another story here as well: despite Gosnell’s horrific crimes, his trial was given almost no major media coverage until online bloggers and a few conservative writers basically shamed the major media into doing their jobs.
That’s not an editorial comment, but rather something I learned from passages like this in the book:
Marc Lamont Hill, host of HuffPost Live, readily acknowledged the bias at work. “For what it’s worth, I do think that those of us on the left have made a decision not to cover this trial because we worry that it’ll compromise abortion rights,” he said. “Whether you agree with abortion or not, I do think there’s a direct connection between the media’s failure to cover this and our own political commitments on the left. I think it’s a bad idea, I think it’s dangerous, but I think that’s the way it is.” — from Gosnell
There is a major motion picture coming soon, but the writers are having trouble finding distribution channels for it, another example of the mainstream media’s determination to set the agenda for what we’re allowed to know and discuss. Click here to read more about the Gosnell movie.
Another documentary, 3801 Lancaster: An American Tragedy, details the story very effectively. You can watch it for free below.
Gosnell is a difficult book to read, but it is important to read since it really shines a light on a very controversial subject and helps you see that it is not, as many claim, simply a ‘choice.’ No matter which side of this issue you take, Gosnell will challenge, educate, and shock you. Click on the book cover below to get the book.
24 January 2017
You’re not defined by what you do for a living. Your higher purpose is about living out your calling and reflecting the aspects of God’s character He built uniquely into you.
Our purpose in this world is to honor God and help other people see Him more clearly.
You can do that if you’re a plumber, an insurance agent, a stay-at-home-mom, a literary agent, a bestselling author, or a retired garbage man.
But in order to do that, you have to understand your calling, and how very different that is from your occupation.
It’s a tough world out there. People lose jobs, they become disabled, they miss out on opportunities or fail to get into certain schools. And if those things happen, you can be crushed and feel adrift if you think you’re defined by your job.
Love Does: Discover a Secretly Incredible Life in an Ordinary World (Thomas Nelson, 2012)
Love is not just a noun; it’s also a verb. Love does stuff.
Bob Goff’s book puts hands and feet on a life of really loving and pursuing what’s important in relationships: with God, our families, and other people. Love Does will produce laughs, tears, and moments of the deep tug in your heart you feel when you know you’re being called to something higher in your life. Love isn’t a feeling; it always does something.
I was surprised at some of Goff’s spiritual insights. He sees angles in the Bible I’ve missed before about how Jesus loves people in practical ways. If you want to take a fresh look at how important it is to love people with more than just words, how to raise your kids with a sense of excitement about the adventures life holds, and what’s really important in relationships, I recommend this book highly.
Chapter 11 is a devotional and life-lesson on God’s desire to have community with all of us, and it had the biggest impact on me.
“When we accept life’s invitation, it’s contagious too. Other people will watch us and start seeing life as something more amazing, more whimsical than before. When you show up to the big life, people (the type who don’t think they’re invited) start seeing invitations everywhere as thick as colorful fall leaves. They don’t think about their pain or their weakness any longer. Instead, they think about how incredible a big life really is and how powerful the one who is throwing the banquet is too.”
Love Does will challenge you to want more from your life and your relationships, especially with God.
I think the most powerful line is this one:
I’ve realized that I used to be afraid of failing at the things that really mattered to me, but now I’m more afraid of succeeding at things that don’t matter.”
Bob Goff is the founder of Love Does, a nonprofit organization that operates schools and pursues justice for children in conflict areas such as Uganda, Somalia, Iraq, and other countries. Bob is a lawyer and serves as the Honorary Consul for the Republic of Uganda to the United States. He is adjunct professor at Pepperdine Law School and Point Loma Nazarene University and lives in San Diego with his wife Maria, their kids, and extended family.
If you want a happy future, you have to learn to pick better memories.
In recent weeks I heard different people I care about say all of the following things:
“Why does everything always have to be so hard?”
“I remember that trip. We fought all the way.”
“She feels like her life will never be good again.”
It’s tough out there, in life. We’re all in it together, but sometimes it seems like we’re being singled out to go through some particularly hard things, or a sequential string of very difficult days (or months, or years).
Eventually, after having experienced enough of these difficult events, we can resign ourselves to that being how it “always” is, or “always” will be.
That’s when we bring out the “never” or “can’t” or “always” labels and start sticking them all over our lives, our capabilities, our relationships, our health, or our happiness. I’m personally guilty of this at times, so I’m not singling you out, but I have to tell you that this behavior is very damaging to your neurochemistry, your psyche, and your future happiness.
What you allow yourself to think about is directly tied to how you feel. It’s not the other way around, although you can let it feel that way.