WATCH: How This Church’s Gift Saves Lives

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Silver Lake Church

This Thanksgiving, I’m grateful for a small country church and its big-hearted members.

We first learned of Silver Lake Church of the Bible (Silver Lake, Oregon) from a simple letter. The story Pastor Leon Baker shared in that letter started in 2006.

After listening to a Focus broadcast, “The Lord laid it upon my heart to begin collecting for the purchase of an ultrasonic machine,” he wrote.

And for eight years, that’s what Pastor Baker and his congregation did.

14 Different Faith Traditions Agree on This

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Family at Wedding

You may have heard of the recent interfaith conference on marriage at the Vatican. The three-day event brought together 14 faith traditions from 23 countries, and included the participation of prominent evangelicals such as Dr. Russell Moore and Rick Warren. Focus marriage expert Glenn Stanton also attended the event.

The Complementarity of Man and Woman: An International Colloquium” served to gather leaders and scholars to examine marriage “in order to support and reinvigorate marriage and family life for the flourishing of human society.” It reaffirmed the centuries-old belief shared by the different faiths that vital to marriage is the complementary nature of man and woman.

Teaching Kids to Be Grateful

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Grateful little girl

Isn’t it strange that in a nation nicknamed the “land of opportunity” that so many struggle to find happiness?

I think, in part, that’s because we haven’t learned the discipline of gratitude. I’m not talking about the brief moments here and there where we acknowledge God’s blessings. I’m talking about living a life of gratitude.

Maybe gratitude is difficult because cynicism is too easy.

By nature, I’m an optimist. But it’s easy to turn pessimistic from time to time.

Why We Share the Blame for the Redefinition of Marriage

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Husband/wife wedding rings

Facts are stubborn things,” wrote John Adams. “Whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”

And so, by that measure, there’s been a lot of conjecture and spin surrounding the push to redefine the sacred institution of marriage.

But what are the facts? Where does the issue concerning same-sex marriage currently stand?

Consider:

Same-sex marriage is now legal or nearly so in 35 states.
 

How to Help Your Family Celebrate Advent

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Advent candles

Have you noticed how, every year, Christmas seems to edge out Thanksgiving more and more? It’s now par for the course to see Pilgrim decorations living side-by-side with Santas on store shelves.

A U.K. researcher confirmed the trend: He found people start thinking about Christmas in August.

Isn’t that something?

Why would that be?

Perhaps people are yearning for Christmas. They’re yearning for the warmth and joy and happy memories.

Deep down, though, we’re longing for a Savior.

The Backward Logic of Perfectionism

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Nobody's Perfect

Many of us strive for excellence. But for other folks, excellence isn’t good enough. They want perfection. As noble as that goal sounds, it’s actually a very unhealthy way to live.

Oh, sure, perfectionists look great on the outside. Just ask today’s broadcast guests Kathi Lipp and Cheri Gregory. Self-acknowledged perfectionists, they’ll tell you they tend to work harder than everyone around them, excel at most things they try, and appear confident. But underneath that polished exterior is a fragile self-image.

Loving My (LGBT) Neighbor

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Coffee mugs

Glenn Stanton’s new book, “Loving My (LGBT) Neighbor: Being Friends in Grace and Truth,” is an important read. I was honored to write the foreword to the book, which I want to share with you today. -JD

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Not long ago, Glenn Stanton invited Jonathan Rauch, a noted author, journalist and gay rights advocate, to address members of our team at Focus on the Family. Glenn and Jonathan have been friends for some time despite representing opposite ends of the spectrum in the national debate over homosexuality.

From Chick-fil-A to the U.S. Senate

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Tim_Scott_Official Portrait_113th_Congress

By now you likely know that  South Carolina’s Tim Scott has become the first African-American Republican from the South to be elected to the United States Senate since Reconstruction.

Logic dictates that he won the seat because more people voted for him than voted for his opponent.

But there’s more to the story.

Isn’t there always?

How Tim got to the night of November 4th is a tale almost too good to be true.

But it isn’t.

Five Things Last Night’s Election Taught Us

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Girl holding American flag

Let the spinning begin.

Pundits and analysts from both sides of the political spectrum are deciphering, interpreting and calculating the impact of last night’s mid-term elections. Our own public policy analysts were up late into the night closely watching the returns from across the country.

What’s our take?

I’ve lived long enough and seen enough to subscribe to the old adage that rarely is anything as good as you hope for – or as bad as you fear.

An Open Letter About Halloween

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jack-o'-lanterns

Peanuts creator Charles Schulz made a habit of dispensing advice through the mouths of cartoon characters, especially the blanket-carrying Linus van Pelt.

Like any offering of counsel, some of it is to be heeded and some of it is not.

“There are three things you must never discuss with people,” the comic strip’s philosopher/theologian once said, “religion, politics and the Great Pumpkin.”

Since we regularly wade into the first two topics anyway, we might as well go for broke and address the latter.