One week ago today, the world woke up to the news that China had been rocked by a 7.9 magnitude earthquake. Yesterday, the China Seismological Bureau revised the magnitude to 8.0. Whatever the number, the reality defies comprehension. The shockwaves from the epicenter in the Sichuan Province were felt several thousand miles away in Hong Kong. Some perspective: that’s like an earthquake in Los Angeles, California being felt in Atlanta, Georgia. This earthquake was so powerful, tremors could be felt in Vietnam, Thailand, Mongolia, Bangladesh, Nepal, India, Pakistan, and Russia.
Yesterday, California’s Supreme Court ignored the will of the people by handing down a landmark decision overturning the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. The 4-3 decision reverses Proposition 22, which defined marriage as being exclusively between one man and one woman. Keep in mind Prop 22 had been passed in 2000 by an overwhelming margin of Californian voters (61 to 39%).
That wasn’t good enough for these justices.
Dr. Dobson reflected, “In 1863, Abraham Lincoln said in the Gettysburg Address that ours is a government ‘of the people, by the people and for the people.’ Well, not in the state of California, where four imperious and unelected justices have just overridden the will of the voters.”
While New Jersey and Vermont have granted same-sex couples many of the same rights and benefits of traditional marriage, California now joins Massachusetts as the second state to redefine the definition of marriage.
My dad was passionate about baseball.
As a young boy, I remember listening to my dad telling stories about the year he played for the Detroit Tigers. As I mention in my book FINDING HOME, there are two reasons why it’s a bit difficult to prove whether or not Dad actually wore the Tiger’s uniform for a season.
First, he’s dead. This, of course, complicates asking him any follow-up questions on the subject.
The second issue has to do with my last name.
I never met the man. I didn’t even know him. But his last act has touched my life in a profound way. Here’s what happened four days ago.
With visions of Happy Meals dancing in her head, four-year-old Kaniyah and her dad, Joseph Richardson, left a Chicago apartment for dinner last Monday night. Walking several short blocks to the nearby McDonald’s was one of the simple pleasures she shared with her father, a 39-year-old musician and choir director.
On May 1st millions of Christians from all walks of life, and from across the country, will unite their voices in prayer as part of the 57th annual National Day of Prayer. Why should believers take a day to focus on prayer? Why pray for our families, our friends, and the needs and challenges facing America?
Simply put, God invites us to do so and promises a blessing when we do. In the book of 2 Chronicles, God says, “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land” (7:14).
He’s written sixteen books. He starred in some 75 movies. He was a speechwriter for President Nixon and President Ford. And, he was awarded seven Emmys for a game show on Comedy Central. I’m referring to actor, author, columnist, lawyer, and movie producer Ben Stein.
Last week, while attending the National Religious Broadcasters convention in Nashville, I learned that Ben Stein (yes, the same guy from Win Ben Stein’s Money) was on hand for a screening of his new film called EXPELLED: No Intelligence Allowed.
As you probably know, last week a young man wearing black, carrying four guns, opened fire on students at Northern Illinois University. Six are dead. Many more are wounded. Once again, Americans struggle to understand what prompted Stephen Kazmierczak, 27, to snap. Scrambling for answers, the media, as they typically do, turned to the “experts” for their insight. One authority claimed Stephen was “unbalanced” and had stopped taking his medicine . . . another pundit pointed his finger at the role of violent video games in many of these school shootings .
I came across a news story several months back that I’ve been meaning to comment on. Here’s The New York Post headline that originally caught my eye: Arrests Soar For Young & Ruthless. In their report the Post documented an alarming trend in crimes committed by youth in New York City. No question, the facts are disturbing: 52,936 youth (ages 13-18) had been arrested during 2006. Don’t rush too quickly past that figure.
That’s more than half the population of Albany, the state’s capital.
Happy New Years!
If you live in New Jersey, and if you believe marriage should remain the union between one man and one woman, I’ve got great news for you. Come to think of it, this victory is good news regardless of where you live. After all, what happens in one state ultimately impacts the rest of us. Here’s what happened.
A number of heavily funded groups in the Garden State with a radical agenda have been working behind the scenes to redefine marriage to include same-sex partners.
Last Sunday tragedy struck close to home.
As you may know, Matthew Murray, 19, barged into New Life Church here in Colorado Springs just two miles down the road from Focus on the Family. His goal? He desired to inflict mass casualties. Armed with three weapons, including a powerful assault rifle and two semiautomatic handguns, Matthew took the lives of two teenage sisters, Stephanie and Rachel Works (pictured), in the parking lot after the worship service.