Ben-Hur: A Great Faith-Based Movie to See This Weekend

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Morgan Freeman and Jack Huston in "Ben-Hur"

By the time the 1800’s came to a close, Lew Wallace’s bestselling novel, Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ, was considered by many to be “the most influential Christian book of the nineteenth century.” Adapted for film a couple times, most recently in 1959, Ben-Hur became a runaway Hollywood hit, eventually capturing eleven Academy Awards.

Even today, over a half-century later, many critics consider it to be one of America’s greatest movies of all time.

Tomorrow, Mark Burnett and Roma Downey are releasing a new version of the classic adventure for the big screen.

Rick and Lynn Raisman are All of Us

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If you’re a fan of women’s gymnastics, chances are you’re familiar with Rick and Lynn Raisman, parents of U.S. gymnast and gold medal winner Aly Raisman.

The Raismans have achieved “viral” status thanks to their all-too-obvious nervousness when Aly performs. They squirm and grimace their way through their daughter’s leaps, somersaults, and dismounts – Aly’s mom sometimes even watches her routines through her hands!

If you haven’t watched the Raismans’ reactions, take a look:

As entertaining as it is to watch, if you’re a parent, you have to admit: the Raismans are simply emoting what all of us feel on the inside as our children grow up and journey towards independence.

Should We Be Outraged By Al Trautwig’s Comments about Adoption?

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Last night in Rio, American gymnast Simone Biles won the gold in Women’s individual all-around. It’s no wonder – she is the best in the world. For those of you not acquainted with Miss Biles, this video from The New Yorker will help, as will as this one from the New York Times:

But Biles’ amazing athleticism isn’t the only reason she’s been in the news lately.

On Monday NBC announcer Al Trautwig said that Biles’ parents aren’t her real parents.

From Bullied to Olympic Champion: Tamika Catchings-Smith

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Did you know that Colorado Springs, where Focus on the Family is located, is an Olympic city? Our mile-high location and thin air make it the ideal place for more than 10,000 Olympians, Paralympians and Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls to train at the U.S. Olympic Training Center located here in town.

That connection helps explain why here at Focus we’re pretty excited about the 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In my post yesterday I introduced you to two divers, both Christians, who will be competing in the Rio Games.

What Good Dads Can Learn From “Bad Moms” (Guest Post)

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The movie “Bad Moms” opened this past weekend in the number two slot, taking in $23.8 million.  And despite the bad language and wild antics, the film delivers a lesson… to dads. I’ll leave you with Plugged In’s Paul Asay to share what he learned when he watched “Bad Moms” — so you won’t have to.

And I’d love to hear from you — what summer movie (in the theaters or on Netflix) can you recommend?

Six Surprising Ways Marijuana is Hurting Your Family

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I first blogged about marijuana back in January 2014, when Colorado became the first state to open its doors to the commercial sale of recreational marijuana. (Since then, Washington, Alaska, and Oregon have followed suit.)

The changes in drug policy came after years of lobbying and campaigning by a group of committed activists who compared marijuana to alcohol. They also promised voters many benefits for our communities, like more efficient use of law enforcement and judicial resources; increased revenue for our schools and infrastructure; and an improvement to public health and safety.

Three Lessons from Justice Clarence Thomas’ Commencement Speech

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When I hear good people say good things, I like to pass them along.  So I want to share three items from U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’ commencement speech to the graduates of Hillsdale College.

1. Benefits don’t exist without responsibility.

The small farm of his youth taught Justice Thomas that you reap what you sow. There are no crops if you don’t take care of the land. “If we didn’t work, we didn’t eat.

From Manson-Follower to Christ-Follower

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Over a period of two nights in 1969, seven people were murdered in their homes in the Los Angeles area.

Several of the victims were bound, and strange messages were written on the walls in their own blood. The most well-known victim was actress Sharon Tate, who was 8 ½ months pregnant. Her baby boy died in her womb.

The crimes became known as the Tate-Labianca murders and were carried out by members of the “Manson Family” at the instruction of their leader, Charles Manson, who is considered one of the most notorious murderers of the last century.

Educational Options for Christian Families

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As many Christians have observed, the impact from the Supreme Court’s redefinition of marriage last year will be felt for generations and across many aspects of our daily lives.

Our children’s education is one of those areas affected by the government’s legal recognition of same-sex marriage.

A few months ago here in the blog, Focus’ Education Analyst Candi Cushman helped us consider the impact the redefinition of marriage might have on public schools and students’ rights in those schools.

“God’s Not Dead 2” Inspired by Actual Court Cases

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“God’s Not Dead 2,” which debuts this Friday, is the worthy sequel to 2014’s “God’s Not Dead,” one of the largest-grossing faith-based films in history.

Here’s the premise (You can read a more in-depth review of the movie on PluggedIn.com.):

High school history teacher Grace Wesley is asked a question about Jesus and His teachings by a student during class. Ms. Wesley, a devoted Christian, responds accordingly.

The fallout from Grace Wesley’s biblically-based answer is significant.