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Showing posts from September, 2020

Spiritual Warning System

San Francisco and New York City both use a highly efficient system to detect the presence of toxins in their city water supply, toxins that may be a possible sign of a terrorist attack. The two cities have found that the best tool for monitoring such threats are bluegills, those little fish many people catch on a lazy summer afternoon.   According to an article by the Associated Press, these two cities keep a small number of bluegills in a tank at the bottom of their water treatment plants because bluegills are highly attuned to chemical imbalances in their environment. When a disturbance is present in the water, the bluegills react against it. If the computerized system of the treatment plant detects even the slightest change in a bluegill’s vital signs, it sends out an e-mail alert.   Bill Lawler, the co-founder of the corporation that makes and sells these bluegill monitoring systems, said, “Nature’s given us pretty much the most powerful and reliable early warning center out there.

When Love Becomes a Problem

The United States does not always come in first place. A few years ago, UNICEF surveyed twenty-one of the most developed nations and measured how youth related to other youth, spent time with parents, used alcohol and/or drugs, and perceived their own happiness. Tight-knit nations—like Sweden, the Netherlands, Denmark, and Finland—ranked the highest when it came to young people feeling secure and happy. The U.S. came in next to last, with the United Kingdom at the bottom of the list. UNICEF’S operating thesis was that “stable, supportive family and social relationships are far more important to kids’ well being than how much expensive junk they have piled up in their rooms.”   William Falk of  The Week  magazine editorialized on these findings:   It would be comforting to shrug off the report as pure anti-American bunkum. But as the parent of a teen and a tween, I cannot. I’ve seen firsthand the emptiness that haunts so many middle-class kids. From an early age, they are taught that li

Where the True Light Shines

During the years we lived in the mountains of Virginia, in a very remote, small community, I found that the hardest months for me to handle were January and February because of the cold and the snow. But even harder to handle were the dark, grey days, especially for a boy who grew up in Southern California.   Even for those who have not grown up in a sunny climate, overcast days are hard to handle. Why is that? It’s because we all need sunshine. Sunlight gives us the Vitamin D we need that lifts our spirits. What is true in the physical realm is also true in the spiritual. We need the light of God. The question is: where do we find it? John tells us where in this next section of his letter. Listen for God’s word to you from 1 John 2:7-14…. Dear friends, I am not writing you a new command but an old one, which you have had since the beginning. This old command is the message you have heard. Yet I am writing you a new command; its truth is seen in him and you, because the darkness is pas