I know this is a tad early, but here’s a reflection with Father’s Day around the corner. As I said in my first book, Finding Home, life is wonderful . . . and life is hard. Having moved 23 times as a kid, I’ve experienced my share of both and prefer the good stuff this journey has to offer. Especially considering the train wreck that was characteristic of my childhood. My family put the “D” into Dysfunction.
When Miss California was asked her views about same-sex marriage during the recent Miss USA contest, Carrie Prejean said, “I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman—no offense to anybody out there—but that’s how I was raised and that’s how I think it should be, between a man and a woman.” Carrie’s comment has sparked a character assassination unlike anything I’ve witnessed in years. She’s getting smeared just for voicing an opinion.
Just when I thought I’d heard every positive spin used to justify the practice of aborting babies, I cracked open this week’s edition of WORLD magazine. Marvin Olasky’s article, “The ‘Blessing’ of Abortion,” left me speechless. Olasky presented several excerpts from a speech given by Rev. Katherine Hancock Ragsdale in Alabama. I think you’ll agree Ms. Ragsdale is about as far to the political left of the spectrum as is humanly possible.
For starters, Ragsdale doesn’t agree with Hillary Clinton’s popular pro-choice worldview that believes abortion should be “safe, legal, and rare.” Far from it.
Food and hope go together.
That perspective dawned on me last weekend while speaking at a Children’s Hunger Fund charitable dinner at the Reagan Library. Based on my personal experience and what I’ve observed in my travels, I’d say this insight is especially true for children. Hunger has a way of devouring their hope and robbing their dreams. Conversely, even in the wake of a natural disaster, if there’s food on the table there’s hope that tomorrow might just be better.
When celebrity gossip blogger Perez Hilton—an intolerant Miss USA pageant judge with an ax to grind—asked Miss California about her views on same-sex marriage, Carrie Prejean didn’t back down or compromise her beliefs. Even though she knew her response might just cost her the crown, she did the right thing. Her answer came from a place of deep conviction . . . and just happens to represent the prevailing viewpoint of the Californians she represents.
Perez asked the politically-charged question, “Vermont recently became the fourth state to legalize same-sex marriage.
Here’s a headline that stunned me earlier this month: Vermont Considers Legalizing Teen “Sexting.” No, that’s not a typo. Just as “texting”—sending a text message between cell phones—has become a vital part of communication, the practice known as “sexting” is a growing trend among young people. In short, sexting is an exchange of photos, usually sexually explicit, between cell phone users. Sexting sometimes involves sending a pornographic video to the recepient. Upwards of 20% of teens admit sexting.
Last weekend, I was in Memphis speaking to a group of 1,200 attendees at the LifeChoices Banquet. LifeChoices has been helping women in the greater Memphis area facing a crisis pregnancy since 1986. In 1987, LifeChoices became a state-licensed child-placing agency that has found loving homes for children who would have otherwise been aborted.
Two years ago, they added a number of medical services, including ultrasound and diagnostic pregnancy testing and, more recently, opened a counseling center and medical clinic minutes from three abortion clinics.
Last year I blogged about a father who, while walking to McDonald’s with his four-year-old daughter, observed the erratic driving of an oncoming car. As the vehicle barreled down on them, with the impact just seconds away, this father instinctively knew what he had to do. Giving no thought to persevering his own life, he grabbed his daughter and held her above his head. His quick action prevented her from being crushed by several thousand pounds of steel.
Last April, we invited our Clubhouse Jr. readers to help us collect tank tops for African orphans. The response was inspiring. From yard sales to bake sales, pizza parties to birthday celebrations, an army of little hands eagerly accepted the challenge. Pooling their creativity and resources, they engaged their families, neighborhoods, churches and schools. When the deadline arrived last July, children as young as 2-years-old from around the country flooded us with tank tops in all shapes, sizes, and colors.
About a month after the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003, two of us at Focus on the Family traveled to Baghdad, the capital of Iraq. Our goal was to determine whether or not open doors existed for Focus to minister to Iraqi families in that war-torn country. At 4:30 a.m., we piled into two GMC Suburbans and departed from Amman, Jordan for the 10-hour drive to Baghdad. Keep in mind, although the war had ended, Iraq was still very much a hotbed of violence.