No Child is a Mistake

I have prayed about this.  I have struggled with my thoughts about how to approach this subject.  To the best of my ability, I am trying to be more encouraging however, my thoughts toward this subject are solid and I know, beyond any shadow of doubt, that they are correct.  I just pray that as you read further, you will understand that this subject matter is a “slap in the face” towards God and His message of Hope in Jesus Christ.

In the year 2000, the former video rental store, Blockbuster, was given an opportunity by another company to expand Blockbuster to online video renting.  Blockbuster laughed at the opportunity and a short time later, the company Netflix became one of the largest online video rental sources of our time.  I am sure that those within the Blockbuster management team didn’t laugh after their company closed and saw Netflix thrive in this new venture.  What a mistake by Blockbuster.

In life, we all make mistakes.  We say things we shouldn’t say.  We forget to do things we should do.  We do things we shouldn’t.  We make mistakes.  We don’t mean to make those mistakes but we do.  Throughout our entire lives, we will make mistakes.  Maybe not the same ones over and over again, but at the very least we will make mistakes one time to learn from them.

As a child, I was taught that even though we make mistakes, we still must suffer the consequences of our mistakes.  As I got older, I was taught that even though we may make mistakes, there is a God who loves us, who cares for us and who wants to forgive us of those mistakes.  However, even though I may be forgiven, I still will suffer the consequences to the decisions I have made, even if it was a mistake.

Unfortunately, our society doesn’t believe that we need to suffer the consequences to our mistakes.  Our society has proven over and over again, that they believe we can make mistakes and bury them.  The current government shutdown is proof of that.  Both Democrats and Republicans in Washington D.C. have voiced their distain over each other’s position on border security.  Yet despite both sides not budging on what they want, over 800,000 people are either working without pay or have been asked to stay home.  Meanwhile, members of Congress (both House and Senate) continue to get paid because it is listed to do so in the Constitution.  Therefore, as our citizens suffer the consequences of Washington’s disagreements, those who are making the decisions continue to get paid and believe that they will not suffer consequences as well.  Why?  Because they continue to be re-elected.

Although I have friends and family that are majorly affected by the current government shutdown, there is another subject that needs more attention and the current liberal media refuses to give light to it and continually denies the consequences of it…abortion.

Recently, New York State Legislators and Gov. Andrew Cuomo have passed a revision to a law concerning women’s rights in relation to abortion and contraception.  I have read over the revised law and have concluded that the majority of this revision is mainly about abortion rights and little to do with contraception.  (You may want to read it for yourself and see if you come to the same conclusion.)

Why this is so important is not the fact that it was passed but the lack of recognition to the consequences of passing that law.  In the past, the law stated that an abortion could not be done once the baby was 24-weeks (in utero) or older.  It also stated that there were consequences, including jail time for those who were caught taking part in abortions once this time frame past.  Now, the revised law says that those who are qualified to do abortions (not just doctors) can do so past the 24-week deadline and no further timeframe was given.  This basically means that whomever, New York State deems worthy to do abortions can do so up to delivery.  As long as the baby is in utero, they can do their horrific and barbaric procedure.  And they can do this so long as they deem the mother and / or baby are at risk of death.  Hold that thought for a moment.

In addition, New York State Legislators and Gov. Andrew Cuomo also removed any and all reference to potential jail time to anyone who executes abortions.  All security a woman had in the decision making process has been taken away.  Here is why….

Let’s say a couple meets in a bar one night.  They have a few drinks and decide to get to know each other a little bit more.  One thing leads to another and viola…a one-night stand.  A couple of months later, the woman begins getting sick.  She goes to the doctor to find out she’s pregnant.  She breaks down in tears and wonders what her options are.  Her doctor says one option is to have an abortion.  However, she isn’t sure what she wants to do.  After a couple more months, the same woman gets into a car accident and enters a coma.  A week or so later, the woman wakes up and notices something is wrong, she no longer feels her baby moving.  She asks what happened and the doctor says that he had to abort the baby because her health was in danger.  Although, this is a made up story, the consequence of the revised abortion law would allow this to happen, even if the mother does not know about it.  The wording states…


Again, in most cases, the woman is making the decision on this, but now New York State has allowed others to make that decision for the woman if the “health care practitioner” deems it necessary.  Not only has the time-frame been removed but also the consequences of executing an abortion.

Now, I am not shocked by this decision, but I am obviously bothered by it.  I am not shocked because New York State government officials have proven their loyalty and devotion to sin.  They have openly and proudly displayed their satisfaction to rebelling against God.  In fact, the Empire State Building will be lit pink in order to commemorate this momentous evil occasion.  They are proudly wearing the badge of sin and shame.  They no longer hide their sin but place it in the open forum of daily living.  But why does this matter?  Why should we be concerned about this open display of sin?

First, God destroys those who are open and proud of their sin.  Sodom, Gomorrah, Babylon, Persians…all of these empires were proud to display their sin in the light.  History has taught us that each of these empires fell not because of economic problems or natural causes, rather they were destroyed because of their open display of sin.

Both Sodom and Gomorrah were known to be violent towards women and outsiders.  In Genesis 19, you can read about how the men of Sodom and Gomorrah wanted to have sex with “men” who came to tell Lot to leave or be destroyed.  Here is what the angels said to Lot…

“For we are about to destroy this city completely.  The outcry against this place is so great it has reached the Lord, and he has sent us to destroy it.” – Genesis 19:13 (NLT)

 “God will turn the sins of evil people back on them.  He will destroy them for their sins.  The Lord our God will destroy them.” – Psalm 94:23

There will come a time when God decides that the sin of a nation is so great that He will send for something or someone to destroy it.  Fortunately for us, that time has not yet come.  For if that time had come, this article would not have been written.

Okay, now that we have an understanding of what God does to those who are open and proud of their sin, what does God also say about children?

“Children are a gift from the Lord; for they are a reward from Him.” – Psalm 127:3

“But Jesus said, ‘Let the children come to me.  Don’t stop them!  For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children.” – Matthew 19:14

And what about those children who are not yet born?

“You guided my conception and formed me in the womb.” – Job 10:10

When Mary’s cousin, who was pregnant with John the Baptist saw Mary, she said, “When I heard your greeting, the baby in my womb jumped for joy.” – Luke 1:44

“You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb.” – Psalm 139:13

God views life from the point of conception.  It is God who guides the man and woman to marriage.  It is God who guides the sperm to meet the egg.  It is God who personally molds and makes the baby into the image He chooses.  The baby, both in utero and after birth are a gift from God.  So let’s look at this from a slightly different viewpoint…

If God sees life beginning at conception, then abortion rebels against God by saying conception doesn’t matter.

If God forms the baby, then abortion must destroy the very creation God is actively doing, therefore, it is murder.

If God has declared that He is intimately involved in creating children, then abortion actively defies God by showing distain towards His creation.

You see, abortion is more than what the world is telling us.  The world says it’s about women’s rights.  God says it’s about life He creates.  The world says that a child is not a child until delivery.  God clearly says that life begins at conception.  The world says they are proud to do what they want, when they want and how they want and without consequences.  God says that He will one day get fed up with our sin and destroy us as He sees fit.

My plea with you today, is this…please, please, please, stop this madness and repent.  Vote for those who will stand for what God stands for.  Voice your distain towards openly sinful practices and flaunting but do it in the most loving way possible.

Continue to stand for what is right.  Continue to vote in the right way.  Continue to plea with God to hold off His judgement against those who openly defy Him.  Continue to pray for our leaders and especially those in New York for their salvation, for their minds to be opened to what God says about life and for them to see the coming judgement upon all of us, if this behavior continues.

I do not know how or when God will decide to say, “Enough is enough”.  All I know is that in the meantime, I will continue to share the love and hope of life in Jesus Christ as long as there is breath in my lungs.

It is time for us Christians to stand together.  It is time for us Christians to show our rulers that God’s law is much higher than their laws.  It is time for us Christians to get out from behind our church walls and meeting places and enter into the political realm.  As long as we keep God first in our lives and do what He calls us to do, we will not hear the trumpets of judgement, rather we will hear the soft voice of God say to us, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.  Come and enter into my rest.”

That is what I desire to hear one day.  If God is for us, who cares who is against us.  He will protect us, He will save us and we will live with Him forever.  We need to stand for those who cannot.  We need to feed those who are hungry.  We are to clothe those who need clothing.  This is the action of the Christian which shows the world how loving and patient God is.  It is acting upon our faith that shows the world that God is in control and He desires to have a relationship with us.

I am praying for the New York Legislature and Governor.  I am praying that one day soon; God will touch their hearts so that they become His children and see life the way He sees it…beginning at conception, precious in this world, and eternal with Him.  Will you join me?  Will you act in a way that is worthy of our calling?  I pray that you do what God has called you to do.  Don’t delay.  God won’t delay His judgement forever.

God bless and encourage someone today.


“Hello God…”

So… here’s a story for you.

Apparently, today…I spoke with God….ON THE PHONE!  I couldn’t believe it!  I wanted to ask him all a bunch of questions.  How long will I live?  When will your Son return?  Can you give me the money I asked for?  I had an incredible conversation with him.  He told me how big He was, how much money he makes and how he affects my entire life.  He told me that I needed to satisfy his needs.

Now before you go all crazy on me…  I did have a conversation with someone today who told me he was my god.  He told me how big he was in business, how important he was to my job and how I have to do exactly what he wants.  Here’s the reality… what he does isn’t all that.  In fact, it doesn’t affect me at all.

The problem was this person saw himself through the eyes of his pride rather than the eyes of God’s love.  It’s like this…  A person is born, lives and works in a small town.  They are friendly, successful and enjoy their work.  However, that same person only does work in that same small town.  They never go outside of that town.  As the town grows, so do they.  As the town buys, he becomes richer.  No matter what happens, everyone knows him and he knows everybody.  When someone from the outside comes into that town to try and do business with him, he refuses and begins to tell that person how important he is and how he is the only one who can help the newcomer in business.  He then compares himself to God and says how nothing happens without his knowledge and authority.   What he does is he only sees himself through his own eyes.  That is called pride and it is the cause of so many of our problems.

We have redefined pride to communicate our feelings towards life itself.  We say things like, “Have pride in your country” or “Take pride in your work”.  The problem is when we “take pride” in something, we communicate how good we are.  When we have pride in our country, we say to ourselves and others, “My country is so important and the best in the world”.  We emphasize “My” rather than “country”.  When we “take pride” in our work, we communicate that our efforts are what get us where we want to be.  But both of these understandings couldn’t be further from the truth.

The book of Proverbs has some good things to say about pride and how God views it.

“When pride comes, then comes dishonor, but with the humble is wisdom.” – Proverbs 11:2

“A person’s pride will bring him low, but a humble spirit will obtain honor.” – Proverbs 29:23

Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before stumbling.” – Proverbs 16:18

Pride is one of those things, we have twisted.  Isn’t “funny” how we do that?  We take the things God calls bad in life and twist the definition to fit our own desires?  We do this with literally everything.  God says to Adam, “When you eat of the fruit on the tree of knowledge of good and evil, you will surely die.”  The serpent then says to his wife, “Will you surely die?”  They focus on their desire to eat good fruit rather than God’s command and viola…we have sin.

When God tells the Israelites to leave Egypt with Moses, they do.  But when they become hungry, they focus in on their own stomachs rather than where God told them to go.  They complain about how good it was in Egypt.  How slavery wasn’t that bad.  They focused in on themselves and what they wanted rather than God’s command for them.

When Nebuchadnezzer (king of Babylon) defeats, captures and enslaves Israel, he believes that he is the greatest king to ever live.  He allows a decree to go forth to worship him and only him.  He felt he was so good at what he does that no one can touch him.  (Until God makes him lose his mind…)

Pride is no different.  God warns us that when pride (focusing on ourselves and our own abilities) enters into our life, the next thing that comes is dishonor, depression and destruction.

When we believe we are the best at what we do, we dishonor others and treat them improperly.  We communicate how good we are rather than help them at what they need.  We puff up our own ego to the detriment of the emotions of those around us.

When we believe we are the best at what we do and someone proves us wrong, we become depressed.  We go from the “drug induced’ high of pride to the “withdrawal” of depression instantaneously.

When we believe we are the best at what we do and are proven wrong, we can also enter into a destructive way of thinking.  We think to ourselves, “I am going to prove them wrong’ or we convince ourselves that they don’t know what they are talking about.  We then go after people and position in anger only to succumb to sleepless nights and people removing themselves from us.  We destroy relationships and ultimately we destroy ourselves.

Pride doesn’t build up… it breaks down.  Pride doesn’t give…it takes.  And this is the polar opposite of what God wants from us.

“Therefore encourage one another and build up one another…” – 1 Thessalonians 5:11

So then we pursue the things which make for peace and the building up of one another.” – Romans 14:19

“…but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.” – Ephesians 4:15-17

We are called to build up, not break down.  We are called to encourage, not discourage.  We are called to speak the truth in love, which means we have the ability to share truth without sounding like we know everything.  We speak the truth because we care not because we have more knowledge.

When we build up, it benefits everyone.  When we build up, it gives to others out of love.  When we build up, we execute the exact evidence of God’s love and purpose in our lives.

As we build up, we no longer need the approval of others.  We no longer need to dwell on our past problems.  We no longer need to prove everyone else wrong.

Doesn’t that make you feel free?  When we forsake pride and embrace God’s love, we begin to love others by serving others.  When we forsake pride and embrace God’s will, He grows His church.  He displays His love through our acts of love and kindness.  God is praised when we obey His calling to build up.  God is honored when we help those who cannot help themselves.  God is worshipped when we surrender our pride and embrace His love.

Can we do that today?  Can we serve others and show them how much God loves them?  Can we forget about our denominational differences and display God’s love by serving side by side?  Can we admit that we aren’t the best and aren’t perfect and encourage someone who may be struggling with depression?  Can we finally show the world that what God has commanded is the best and what we desire is nothing in comparison?

Let’s do that today.  Let’s build each other up.  Let’s forsake pride and embrace God’s unconditional, always forgiving love.

God bless and encourage someone today.

The Northern Frontier Experience (Part 3)

After the dad and son settled in, they approached the cafeteria.  The steps were made of wood but were sturdy.  They opened the screen doors and noticed a congregation of men and sons looking over papers and talking with two people at a table.

The dad and son started to walk toward the table.  As they approached, the woman sitting there smiled and asked, “What are your names?”  The dad said, “Paul and Troy Smith”.  The nurse thumbed through her paperwork and found the applications that the dad had previously sent in.  She then briefly looked them over and said, “Okay.  You have no medications, so please take your son and go over to the various activity tables and decide what you want to do over the next few days.”

Paul and Troy looked over every piece of paper there.  The dad noticed the assortment of activities and was dumbfounded on how much there was to do. He turned to his son and asked, “Troy, what would you like to do?”

Paul and Troy chose six activities that they could do.  Over the course of the next few days, they had loads of fun.  Troy was able to shoot a bow and arrow for the first time.  Paul was able to teach his son how to fish and sail.  Both of them had so much fun.  From swimming in the lake to the campfires at night.  Each evening, after the campfire they would carefully walk to the cabin.  Paul would tuck Troy in while the counselors decided it was time for a quick game before bed.

Paul then was told that the dads were going back to the cafeteria for coffee and snacks.  Little did Paul know what was going to change his life forever.  As he sat and listened to the stories, he noted how each dad had come from a situation or experience that was similar to his.  One dad said he as a former alcoholic but when Jesus found Him, he no longer needed to have a drink.  Another story that caught his attention was a dad who became so busy with his job that his wife left him with the kids and the struggles he had fighting to see his son again.

Paul remembered where he came from.  The busy world of work.  The inundated world of working from home and trying to work out at the gym.  What time did he actually have to himself?  All Paul knew was work, work and some more work.  But in this atmosphere of dads, he noticed one thing.  None of them had cell phones or iPads.  Each and every dad had a smile from ear to ear.  Every dad had a story that they wanted to share.  They wanted to show other dads they weren’t alone in their struggle.  Paul desired to have more of this type of experience, but he didn’t have the courage to ask about how to be so happy.

On the last evening of the campfire, a young man came up to speak and said, “My dad and I used to fish and sail.  He taught me everything, both good and bad.  Unfortunately, my dad passed away from a heart attack because he worked so much.  All he could think about was how to make more money.  He also taught me that there was one relationship that was necessary to have a happy life.”  At this, Paul’s ears became more attentive and wanted to understand the secret to happiness.

The young man continued, “Living a happy life is not dependent on how much money you make or how you love to fish or sail.  Living a life of true happiness comes from within.  Within each person is a desire to be something bigger and better than he knows he can achieve.  Each father desires to do better for his wife and son.  Each father knows that there is something out there bigger than he is.  I am here to tell you that no matter your status in life, work or socially, the only way to true happiness is through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.”

Paul then said to himself, “Is that it?  It doesn’t sound extravagant like the other dads made it seem.”  As he sat and listened to the rest of the story, Paul heard something he had never heard before.  It was as if his conscience was calling out to him.  Immediately, there was a sense of hopelessness yet hopefulness.  Then came the doubting, but the truth started to ring even louder.  The next thing he heard was the young man say, “If you want to meet Jesus tonight, stay back and talk with one of us.”  That was it!  Paul knew he needed to stay back and talk with the young man.

Paul and Troy stayed behind as others left for the night.  The young man who spoke approached, he could see the desire to learn on Paul’s face.  They spoke for a few minutes and then prayed.  After the prayer, Paul no longer heard the tension he had before.  There was an inner peace he had never felt before.  A sense of joy, happiness and contentment overwhelmed his soul.  This was something he never felt before, but he liked it, a lot.

Paul had been found by Jesus.  Jesus had healed his entire being.  His guilt was gone.  His fear subsided.  His life was different and he knew this was the first day of the rest of his life.  He then promised himself that nothing would ever get between him and his Savior.  He also made sure that his son and wife came before other things he enjoyed.  In the end, Paul knew that if God had not led them to Northern Frontier Camp, his life would have just continued down the slippery slope he was headed.  It was Northern Frontier Camp that showed him a new way of living and he wasn’t going to let it go.

Is Faith Blind? (Thinking Challenge #4)

So, is faith blind?  Is faith a matter of believing in something that we cannot see, hear, taste, touch or feel?  What is faith?  Is it some psychological state of mind that allows us to believe in something or someone that does not exist?  When someone says, “I have faith in God”, what does that really mean?

At a time in my life, I had to reconcile these questions.  Growing up in the church, I had heard the word faith over and over again, but the only definition given was Hebrews 11:1 – “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”

But what does that really mean?  It almost seems like a contradiction rather than a definition.  I mean, everyone else says that faith is hoping in something that you can’t see, feel, hear or touch.  Even the dictionary says faith is a “firm belief in something for which there is no proof”.  Now we have just encountered a problem.  The Hebrews 11 definition seems to contradict the dictionary.  Oh no, what ever shall we do?

Let me ask this, ‘If faith is a belief in something that cannot be proven’, then it would come to reason that the faith is a theoretical based system.  Let’s think about this for a moment. If something cannot be proven, but someone believes in it, it would then become a theory until completely proven, right?

In science, something cannot be considered a law of nature, physics or chemistry until there is solid evidence that the theory exists.  When a specific number of proofs are then seen, in a tangible way, it is only then called a law.  So what about evolution?  Why is it still called ‘the theory of evolution’ if everyone believes it to be true.  A lot of people have “faith” in our current scientific “discoveries” so should this theory be called ‘the law of evolution?’

So if faith in God is simply a belief that cannot be proven, then is God simply a theoretical mindset?  Or is there something else to this?  Is it possible that God really exists in a tangible and real way?  Do demons and angels really exist or was that postulated by some uneducated morons and imbeciles?  If these are just simply uneducated, then why do so many people, who are highly educated, still believe in God?

Here is what I believe about faith….

The real definition of faith is – ‘allegiance to duty or a person; fidelity (accurate) to one’s promises’.  This means that faith is not just something fly-by-night.  It is a commitment to God caused by believing in His very accurate promises.

The word fidelity means accurate to the extreme.  It is so accurate that it has to be true.  So, faith is a total commitment to God and believing in God’s promises, so how does this equate to the Hebrews  11 definition?  Here it is again, piece by piece…

“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for….” – Knowing and completely trusting…(the original definition of hope is trust)

“…and certain of what we do not see.” – Knowing (with evidence) in a God we cannot physically see.

So faith is simply knowing and completely trusting in a God we cannot see but the evidence exists to allow him to be Truth and not theory.  So what evidence do we have?  This is where you come in.  Simply reply with what tangible evidence you have that God is alive and well.  If you feel God doesn’t exist, then reply with the tangible evidence you have.  Either way, I am looking for your input.  Remember, whatever evidence you bring must be tangible and not theoretical.  I’ll update this later on, depending on the responses.

Let’s see what you come up with.  God bless and think today.

Works or Faith Alone (Thinking Challenge #2)

This is the 2nd installment of the Thinking Challenge.  If you haven’t read the last post (the 1st in this series), I am challenging everyone to reconsider what they had been taught growing up.  This is a challenge to think a bit about what we believe and why.  If you have any opinion or dare to take this challenge, I will be doing this for the rest of this month and possibly next month, depending on responses.  READY for the next challenge?

James 2:14-26 talks about faith versus deeds (works).  James is asking a very critical question to those Jews who called themselves Christians.

“What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds?  Can such faith save him?” (vs. 14)

Is James suggesting that deeds and faith make you a follower of Christ?  This would seem to contradict what Paul said in Ephesians 2:8-9, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast.”  So is there a contradiction here or is there some way we can clearly tell if both of these statements are correct?

Now look at 1 John 5:1-4, “Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well.  This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands.  And His commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world.  This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.  Who is it that overcomes the world?  Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.”

Now ask yourself this…Are James and John right and Paul wrong or is there another way to rectify this potential problem?  Let’s look at what James says about believing in God, “You believe that there is one God.  Good!  Even the demons believe that – and shudder.” (James 2:19)

Oh boy, now it gets confusing.  First James says that you have to do deeds and have faith.  Then Paul says it is by faith alone in Jesus that saves us. Finally, James and John seem to disagree with each other as one says that everyone who believes in God is a child of God, while the other says that even demons believe in God and shudder.

Hmmm.  Sounds like a predicament awaits and some answers are needed.  How would you rectify this sticky situation if someone asked you these questions.  Respond and let me know how to satisfy both sides of this argument.

The reason for this one is mainly because some Evangelical Christians believe in faith alone, while others say that our works get us into heaven.  Yet other Protestant beliefs say that faith alone doesn’t get us into heaven, we must also do works to.

Again, the challenge is here….Let’s see if anyone is up to this challenge.  I can’t wait to see how you respond.

God Bless and Think Today…

It’s the Truth of the Matter

This is a poll regarding the topic of truth.  Please take some time to look this over and vote.  No matter your view, your input is extremely important!!!!  Pass this along to your friends and family.  The more votes the better the results.  Thank you in advance for participating.

The “Critical Thinking” of NY State

Before reading on, here is some “food for thought” regarding a story that NY State used on the English ELA exam for 8th grade students:

The Hare and the Pineapple

by Daniel Pinkwater

In olden times, the animals of the forest could speak English just like you and me. One day, a pineapple challenged a hare to a race.

(I forgot to mention, fruits and vegetables were able to speak too.)

A hare is like a rabbit, only skinnier and faster. This particular hare was known to be the fastest animal in the forest.

“You, a pineapple have the nerve to challenge me, a hare, to a race,” the hare asked the pineapple. “This must be some sort of joke.”

“No,” said the pineapple. “I want to race you. Twenty-six miles, and may the best animal win.”

“You aren’t even an animal!” the hare said. “You’re a tropical fruit!”

“Well, you know what I mean,” the pineapple said.

The animals of the forest thought it was very strange that tropical fruit should want to race a very fast animal.

“The pineapple has some trick up its sleeve,” a moose said.

Pineapples don’t have sleeves, an owl said

“Well, you know what I mean,” the moose said. “If a pineapple challenges a hare to a race, it must be that the pineapple knows some secret trick that will allow it to win.”

“The pineapple probably expects us to root for the hare and then look like fools when it loses,” said a crow. “Then the pineapple will win the race because the hare is overconfident and takes a nap, or gets lost, or something.”

The animals agreed that this made sense. There was no reason a pineapple should challenge a hare unless it had a clever plan of some sort. So the animals, wanting to back a winner, all cheered for the pineapple.

When the race began, the hare sprinted forward and was out of sight in less than a minute. The pineapple just sat there, never moving an inch.

The animals crowded around watching to see how the pineapple was going to cleverly beat the hare. Two hours later when the hare cross the finish line, the pineapple was still sitting still and hadn’t moved an inch.

The animals ate the pineapple.

MORAL: Pineapples don’t have sleeves

Now here are the questions that NY State decided to have the students answer:

  1.  Which of the animals was the wisest?
  2. Why did the animals eat the pineapple?

My son had told my wife about this story and actually found it interesting as it involved his imagination.  He also expressed that he didn’t understand why they asked these questions.  This was when I decided to dig a little deeper.

Apparently, this story had made several newspapers and has invoked critics from every literary and educational spectrum.  I read one article defending NY State’s decision to include not only this story but the questions as it invoked the “critical thinking” concepts that teachers are required to teach.  Conversely, there were many articles criticizing NY State on including this story as it does not accurately promote educational ideals.

Although the writer intended to write a spoof on the “Tortoise and the Hare”, the fact that NY State used this to test on “critical thinking”, is proof positive that the educators of NY State have no clue as to what critical thinking really is about.

When we look at the critical thinking concept, we understand that it involves a thought process that makes the reader analyze “outside the box”.  The reader is supposed to ask the question, “What concepts can I see and understand that are not explicitly written in the story?”

Here’s the problem…Each of these questions have answers, which have a numeric value to the answer.  Our children are taught that when we use critical thinking any and all opinions have merit.  However, this concept is not only incorrect but dangerous and here’s why…

If you are standing on a street corner and see someone ready to jump off of a skyscraper, you decide to intervene.  You go up to where the jumper is and say, “Please come off of edge.  If you jump, you will die.”  The jumper responds, “I won’t die.  I believe that I can fly and even if I can’t I’ll just land on my feet.  I have been taught that as long as I land on my feet, everything will be okay.”

Based on this very short story, here is where critical thinking becomes a reality.  Critical thinking states that based on the information in the story there is a person with the right view of life and death and one that is wrong.  How do you justify the thought process?  You go to what you know is fact!

According to the Laws of Physics, gravity is a known fact that draws all objects to itself.  This means that unless I am beyond the gravitational pull of earth, I will be pulled down to the ground.  We also know that according to Physics and Biology that any object dropped from extreme heights cannot survive.  We know this not just from science but from others painful and deathly experiences.

So which person is correct in their thinking?  It is obvious that the person jumping is not in his/her right mind.  The way we just came to this conclusion is called “critical thinking”.  We have taken known facts and are able to invoke them to come up with a correct answer.  If critical thinking only involves opinions and all opinions matter, then both people in the story are correct.

Our children are being taught “all opinions matter”.  But do they?  The word “opinion” is defined as “a view, judgment or appraisal formed in the mind about a particular matter”.  Solely based on this definition, we tend to think that all opinions count and are correct.  However, as we see from our story, opinions do matter and some opinions are incorrect (no matter how positive we think we are).  When our children are taught about giving their opinion in life, they will be required to give it based on evidence, not feelings.  Unfortunately, we are being taught in school, on the web, in TV shows and movies that all opinions are valid.

Remember the original story given by NY State?  I have to ask this question…Do you think 8th grade students are going to take your test seriously when you come up with a story and related questions like this one?

On a side note…..

“Poor Spongebob, his house was eaten by Sandy the Squirrel and her friends.  Now he is homeless, wandering the ocean floor trying to understand why Sandy would attack his home in this manner.  Now the insurance company won’t pay for the rebuilding of the pineapple home as it was not an act of God.  However, there is hope.  Sandy and her friends have been arrested on hate crimes against sponges and are expected to serve 5 years in Bikini Bottom prison.  Pray that Spongebob finds a new pineapple that doesn’t have sleeves and won’t be eaten by Sandy are her friends.”

Share your thoughts.

God Bless and encourage someone today.