Category Archives: Faith

Sometimes, simple and straight forward is the way to go

“And this is what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.”

When this first came out, back in the 60’s, Charles Shultz fought tooth and nail to keep Linus’s monologue in the cartoon. To his everlasting credit, it stayed, and is one of the most memorable parts of the show.

Merry Christmas to you all, from all of us at “the Harbor”. May you all be blessed this Christmas and throughout the New Year.

And one more for the road.

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Now more than ever …

on this Independence Day holiday weekend.

Is Anybody There?
Does Anybody Care?
Does Anybody See, what I see??

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I know exactly how he feels

There is commentary from NOW and other liberal outlets, about the ad CBS allowed to run for the upcoming Super Bowl, done by Tim Tebow and his mother. That all these folks profess to be “pro choice” when they are anything but, is an understatement of monumental proportions.

Personally, I think that “choice” should be up to the individual (and kept at the state level btw), their own conscience, and/or the deity of their choosing. (This is also assuming we are talking about something done within the first month or so after conception, but that is a topic for another day.) Now let’s be serious about it. Real choice should be exactly that, allowing an individual, after having all the facts given to them, about the positive and negative outcomes of any option taken, being allowed to freely make their own intelligent decision, based on those facts.

Sounds like that is what Tebow’s mom did all those years ago. And so did another, much less famous, but just as heroic woman. Her story is here. And yes, I know exactly how Tim Tebow feels.

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Glory To God In The Highest

… And let it begin (as it was and ever shall be) with this:

And it came to pass, that in those days there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that the whole world should be enrolled. This enrolling was first made by Cyrinus, the governor of Syria. And all went to be enrolled, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem: because he was of the house and family of David, to be enrolled with Mary his espoused wife, who was with child.
And it came to pass, that when they were there, her days were accomplished, that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him up in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
And there were in the same country shepherds watching, and keeping the night watches over their flock. And behold an angel of the Lord stood by them, and the brightness of God shone round about them; and they feared with a great fear.
And the angel said to them: Fear not; for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, that shall be to all the people:
For, this day, is born to you a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord, in the city of David. And this shall be a sign unto you. You shall find the infant wrapped in swaddling clothes, and laid in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly army, praising God, and saying:

Glory to God in the highest; and on earth peace to men of good will.
And it came to pass, after the angels departed from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another: Let us go over to Bethlehem, and let us see this word that is come to pass, which the Lord hath shewed to us. And they came with haste; and they found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger.
And seeing, they understood of the word that had been spoken to them concerning this child. And all that heard, wondered; and at those things that were told them by the shepherds.
But Mary kept all these words, pondering them in her heart.
And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God, for all the things they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.
Luke 2 verses 1-20 Douay-Rheims American Edition Bible (1899)

From all of us here at “The Harbor”, A Very Merry Christmas and the Happiest of New Years!!

(Bumped to the top, from the archives, again. I expect this to be an annual event, cause THIS story always bears repeating.)

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Ransoms

Normally, this would be the time of year to put aside thoughts pertaining to politics, specific acts or actions of those with evil on their minds or in their hearts, and other secular items not considered part and parcel of the season.

This would be the time to reflect and rejoice in the most special and divine gift bestowed upon all mankind, by a loving and gracious Father. Even those who profess to be agnostic or atheist, are able (if they so choose) to pause and reflect on the more noble and honorable aspects of the human condition, perhaps to be of a mind to improve the lot of their fellow man, by willingly embracing the (proper) spirit of the season.

Sadly, those in positions of power, not only at the national level, but world wide, are seemingly of like minds in taking steps toward the polar opposite of the seasonal ideals, those of “Peace on Earth, Good Will Toward (All) Men”. They would use this time of celebration, time taken away from the works and world of men, to work toward bringing about legislation and laws which would, when all is said and done, set the stage for anything but “Peace on Earth”. Most certainly their actions, at least as viewed by those with any amount of reasoning ability or rational thinking, fall far short of promoting “Good Will Toward Men”. They seek, under the cover of the season – with men of good will looking the other way – to take the necessary action(s) which , in their minds will:

Seal the fate of this country
Set the stage for their complete take over of the reigns of power, no longer beholding to the “will of the people”.
Allow for the public admission that the Constitution as written is nothing more than (a best) “a guideline”, to be followed (if at all) as political expediency may dictate. That this Nation’s “rule of law” is suborned to those laws and ideals as set forth by “the world court” or such agents or agencies controlled by “a world body of governance”.

I could find, and provide links to any and all of the above. But you (who stop by here) have most likely already read them yourself, if not have linked and commented on same.

If you think the “Health Care” legislation proposed by the Congress and or Senate is about health care, think again, it is about nothing more than power and control.

If you think “Cap and Trade” is about taking care of, and control of the world wide levels of pollution and placing “responsibility” on those who are most egregiously impacting the environment, think again, it is about money, control, and power.

If you think publicly (let alone what may be happening “behind closed doors”) suborning American interests, and American will (to affect positive military and political balance through out the world), to the interests and “wills” of other nation-states/governments, is only about “correcting past injustices”, or allowing for “a world wide level playing field”, think again, power, money, and control, are at the heart of the matter.

If all the above is allowed to go unchecked, allowed to continue – even at a slower “RINO like” pace – we are, as a people, as a culture, as a nation, doomed.

Depending on what transpires over the next month or two, we may even be too late in bringing about change via the ballot box, starting with the mid-term elections in 2010.

To this end, remember the reason for the season. The celebration of the birth of he who ultimately became the ransom for all mankind. That when mankind’s fate appeared to be all but sealed, all falling short, destined for an eternity of enslavement to the debauchery of demons, the Son of God as man, check and mated the designs of Evil.

It is His birth, and the hope it allows to spring forth, which men of good will might well want to remember. For despite all which is wrong, in this country, and in the world at large … despite all the evil which men do or are commiting themselves to do. There is still hope.

I am of a firm belief this country was, at some level, brought about by divine providence. That the minds of men were, if not directly controlled, were benefited from divine inspiration. This being the case, it is hard to believe, as long as there are men of sound mind and free will in this great land, that we would willingly be brought under the twin yokes of tyranny and oppression.

As our spiritual ransom came with a price. Can we as free men not (if such a time comes) be willing to emulate He who paid the price for our spiritual freedom, in paying the price for our physical (and political) freedom here on earth? I’ll be honest, I would, if there was a right and proper choice, rather take another route. It scares me. But better to die a free man, than to live in chains. I will stand, I will fight, I will to the best of my ability, honor that oath; “To defend and protect the constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”

What say you?

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Fathers and "Cons"

I visit a number of blogs on a daily basis.   One of my favorite stops is Pascal’s Fervor.    He has acquired a “resident troll”, whose singular ability to ignore direct questions, while spewing forth any number of inane comments, makes one wonder  if  there is more than one functioning reality on this earthly plane, at the same time.

A couple of days ago, (Would have written about this sooner, but some minor -but no less annoying- physical issues, kept me from posting.) said troll posited the following, in response to a post (and associated comments) at Pascal’s home on the web.

Regarding cons excessive zealousness with history and the bible, seems to me they have a father fixation. The Founding fathers, the father in heaven, and their own fatherhood dominates their thinking. … “

Source: “The resident troll over at Pascal’s

To be fair, the troll hit on something which could almost be considered a “kernel of truth”.   Of course, he took it to the absurd (and incorrect) extreme.    However, there was still the feeling of (on my part) this perhaps needs to be addressed in somewhere other than the comments section.     So, here goes.

First off, we live (despite feminist claims to the contrary) in a Patriarchal society.   This has, with few exceptions, been the rule throughout recorded history.   This does not mean (nor should it) women are not capable of leading, or shouldn’t lead, only for the most part, men have been the leaders of the majority of sectors within any given society or culture.

Having said that, it is not too surprising that throughout this country’s history, the predominate number of movers and shakers were male.    It is our happy circumstance, that our “Founding Fathers” were of a shared wisdom, directed toward a common goal, (which allowed for what might be considered divine intervention) ending in the ultimate production of our nation’s signature documents, the Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution.   Is it small wonder we venerate these men, their collected works, and the great nation which has been passed down to us?

Regarding Mr. Trolls take on religion, follows a similar progression.  Most religions (also)  tend to be patriarchal in nature.   Currently, the top three, are all of this stripe.   Of the three, only one goes from being purely patriarchal, to down right misogynistic in it’s across the board dealings with, and toward, women. (Three guesses as to which “religion of peace” that is, and the first two don’t count!)

A partial exception to this might be the strong (and more than proper) adoration of Christians, particularly Catholics, to the Blessed Virgin.   However, taking this in context, it could be said this is but the personification of how we should honor and respect our (own) mothers.  That the Son of God, made flesh, should place his above all others, should not be too terrifically surprising, and in and of itself does not take away from the Patriarchal nature of the Church, rather it enhances it.   A man confident in his own nature and being, would not feel the least bit lessened or “marginalized” (to use some common psychobabble) in properly acknowledging his mother and the part(s) she played in him becoming who he is.

Ironically enough, the third “religion” mentioned above, as it is in most of its “teachings and instructions”, is the antithesis of promoting self confidence and self reliance in men.   This being the case, it follows  they are far less likely to respect or honor women,  (be it their mother, or any woman) because they are not given to honor or respect anything (save the darker parts of their nature)  or themselves.

So is it any wonder, we honor “The Father”, who allowed for his only begotten Son,  to surrender himself to the cross, in order for mankind’s ransom to be paid?   Nor has this been exclusive to the Christan sects.  Even the Greeks, Romans, and Norse mythologies place a “father figure” as the leader of their respective polytheist faiths.

That Mr. Troll’s statement at least  implies <b>only “cons” place their faith in God, is  not only absurd, but slanders those of other political stripes, who happen to (sometimes extremely so) go down a divergent political path, but are to the best of their abilities, as strong and as demonstrative in expressing their faith as any conservative would.   To be sure, there are men of all political persuasions who are of a wicked and vile nature.  For me to say that all who vote or belong to the Democratic Party are godless heathens who care for nothing else but what’s in it for them, would be just as untrue and as inane, as Mr. Troll’s bit of glibness above.

Which brings me to this.

All men, at least at some point in their lives, try to gain a better understanding of their own father (or the man or men, who for whatever reason, were their “father figures”).  In so doing, one hopes not just to understand the man, but gain a greater understanding of himself.   This is enhanced by attempting to understand, or gain a greater knowledge of, ones God (and the roots/core values of ones religion).  Further in working toward understanding the foundations of our form of governance, we complete a triangle of sorts.

Think of each “point” of the triangle  as labeled with the following:

1 Religion – God the Father

2 Culture/Society/Governance – The Founding Fathers

3 Familial History – Father

Placing oneself in the center of the triangle,  we seek to develop into a fully functioning, rational thinking, and reasoning being.  To head along that path, I would propose you could do far worse than to delve into all three sections of the triangle  above, to develop ones own core.  This is not the limit to this path of self growth and development, only the beginning.  And a constant return to same to reassess and evaluate where you are now, and where you are going, is not a bad thing either.

So is it of any wonder the seemingly rudderless and directionaless Mr. Troll is want to mock those who traditionally strive to honor those things which if properly done, stand to strongly make one a better person in the end?    I suspect there may also be more than a bit of envy on the part of Mr. Troll as well.  But as I do not know him, this is only conjuncture on my part.

So, go ahead and call me fixated on Fathers.  Call me a mother’s boy.  Call me reverent toward God the Father (though I am more than a bit of a backslider from time to time) by openly acknowledging His station.  Call me an unbending constitutionalist in my open admiration toward that document in particular, and the Founding Fathers who gave birth to same.   As far as I am concerned, you could do far worse in trying to insult me  in the above manner.   But be my guest.

h/t to Pascal

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New Beginnings

Spring. When we are witness to natures annual rebirth. The cycle of life is shown to continue as evidenced by new buds of grass and flower, along with new young of animals large and small. It is also, if you are adherent to any of the Christian faiths, a time of spiritual rebirth as well.
Easter signifies, not only an ending (of sorts), a ransom paid to insure mans passage into a heavenly afterlife, but a new beginning as well. The law of the old testament has been superseded by that of the new.
It is considered a time of spiritual renewal/beginnings as well. This being exemplified by the recent activities of his holiness Pope Benedict XVI, baptizing into the faith Magdi Allam, deputy director of Italy’s largest newspaper,who just happens to have been Muslim. It will be interesting to see what repercussions will result from this newest planting in the garden of the faithful. That both converted and converter have displayed admirable amounts of courage in so public an act, speaks highly of both.
And not being totally without reflection, I got to thinking about what caused me to come back to the Christian faith. Though past failings, prevent me from returning “completely” to the faith of my birth, accepting there is a God, and as it follows, a son who was ransomed for us all, is not . Fact is, there were many questions I had, most beginning with “WHY”, which turned me from my faith. But some things kept calling me back. I believe in there being a reason for everything and only with the passage of time, have I begun to accept, that though this is true, I am not entitled to know what these reasons are. As is so often said to the “under 21 crowd” living under this roof, “I need to stay in my own pay-grade”.
However, once in awhile, I am privileged in gaining some bit of understanding. Something which after hearing and or reading, makes too much sense not to be of value. So in keeping with this (if somewhat belated) Easter theme, I ask you to read this. (And note, even though both the late Dr. Scott and his wife grace the top of the page, the transcript itself is in his own words, and is what he spoke about on numerous occasions during his telecasts.)
I may not have agreed with everything Dr. Scott ever said. But this has the ring of truth. Its logic is sound. Even if you don’t believe for what ever reason, perhaps if nothing else it will get you thinking. And if perchance, a seed planted, takes root and sprouts … isn’t this the time of year for that after all?

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Let There Be Peace On Earth …

… And let it begin (as it was and ever shall be) with this:

And it came to pass, that in those days there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that the whole world should be enrolled. This enrolling was first made by Cyrinus, the governor of Syria. And all went to be enrolled, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem: because he was of the house and family of David, to be enrolled with Mary his espoused wife, who was with child.
And it came to pass, that when they were there, her days were accomplished, that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him up in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
And there were in the same country shepherds watching, and keeping the night watches over their flock. And behold an angel of the Lord stood by them, and the brightness of God shone round about them; and they feared with a great fear.
And the angel said to them: Fear not; for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, that shall be to all the people:
For, this day, is born to you a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord, in the city of David. And this shall be a sign unto you. You shall find the infant wrapped in swaddling clothes, and laid in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly army, praising God, and saying:
Glory to God in the highest; and on earth peace to men of good will.
And it came to pass, after the angels departed from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another: Let us go over to Bethlehem, and let us see this word that is come to pass, which the Lord hath shewed to us. And they came with haste; and they found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger.
And seeing, they understood of the word that had been spoken to them concerning this child. And all that heard, wondered; and at those things that were told them by the shepherds.
But Mary kept all these words, pondering them in her heart.
And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God, for all the things they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.
Luke 2 verses 1-20 Douay-Rheims American Edition Bible (1899)

From all of us here at “The Harbor”, A Very Merry Christmas and the Happiest of New Years!!

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Tis The Season Part 2

Once again the holiday season is upon us.
A time for some, of stress … of heightened hustle and bustle. A hectic time of crowded airports/bus depots/train stations. Of malls and shopping centers fulled to overflowing. A kneeling of many at the alter of the almighty dollar, and what it can buy. A seemingly endless string of parties, starting around Halloween culminating on New Years Eve. Others are found exclusively glued to their televisions (the larger and higher def picture the better) watching the procession of gladiators at both the college and professional levels peeking at nearly the same time as the New Years bacchanal.
As it so happens, we have other distractions to fill in the empty spots in all the above. Lo, there is positioning going on in both major political spheres. Bloodletting of another kind, though not altogether different, from the bread and circuses listed above. At least the followers of the gridiron share an overall love of the sport, with the majority able to appreciate individual high achievers regardless of team or league. Not so with the politics of the land. The polarization of the voting populi appears to increase with each passing election cycle. Spurred on by politicians on both sides and media outlets of all stripes.
Then there is the specter of war. Of haves and have nots (and at first blush not quite in the way you would expect). Of philosophies and cultures diametrically apposed … each wanting to see the other exist no more. For God Is On OUR SIDE!!! Evil runs rampant world wide … and with few exceptions, too many who claim to be good men, do little or nothing.
Once again the holiday season is upon us

And it came to pass that in those days there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that the whole world should be enrolled.
This enrolling was first made by Cyrinus, the governor of Syria. And all went to be enrolled, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem: because he was of the house and family of David. To be enrolled with Mary his espoused wife, who was with child.
And it came to pass that when they were there, her days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her first born son and wrapped him up in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger: because there was no room for them in the inn.
And there were in the same country shepherds watching and keeping the night watches over their flock. And behold an angel of the Lord stood by them and the brightness of God shone round about them: and they feared with a great fear. And the angel said to them: Fear not; for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy that shall be to all the people:
For, this day is born to you a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord, in the city of David. And this shall be a sign unto you. You shall find the infant wrapped in swaddling clothes and laid in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly army, praising God and saying:
Glory to God in the highest: and on earth peace to men of good will.
And it came to pass, after the angels departed from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another: Let us go over to Bethlehem and let us see this word that is come to pass, which the Lord hath showed to us. And they came with haste: and they found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger.
And seeing, they understood of the word that had been spoken to them concerning this child. And all that heard wondered: and at those things that were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these words, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.
Book of Luke , The Douay-Rheims Bible

Most would post the above quote on Christmas (and that may happen here as well). But perhaps if the above was remembered as “the real reason for the season” not only on the High Holy Day itself, at the very least, the time from All Souls Day forward (the day after Halloween, for those who don’t follow the Catholic catechism). Who knows, maybe a trend would develop and the rest of the year would be covered as well. For if those who believed in God were in the habit of at least acknowledging him daily, and being civil towards their fellow men, there would be a lot less pettiness, and strife. As to those of a more humanistic nature … would it not make sense to reach for and develop the more positive aspects of human nature (if that is your “god”)? rather then the base animal instincts we all have in common?
What about letting the other guy have that parking space you were both hell bent on getting to? If nothing else, wouldn’t the extra walk (hopefully hand in hand with your significant other … or perhaps your genetic hostages … be of greater value then that parking space? Making an effort to see the other fella’s point of view … and debating in a calm civilized manner … wouldn’t that add validity to your character if not garner more people to your cause? Watch that sporting event … perhaps doing it with your dad (if you are lucky enough to still have him around) or a son or a father in law? (bonding is a good thing) By all means (if it is possible to do so with out going into debt up to your wazoo) get something of worth for those who are special in your life. But don’t put the gift buying above the idea behind it all. That the greatest gift of all was given to mankind, just a few short weeks away.
And finally, that there will always be conflict … and at times the embers of mans darker nature will burst into the firestorm of war. Even in the time of year when “Peace on Earth goodwill towards men” should be the byword. Perhaps if those whose malignant philosophies and or governments seek to rise against us, can see our respective cultures and nations making an honest effort to live as men and women of faith. Maybe, just maybe it will give some of them pause… and wouldn’t that bring the chance for real Peace that much closer?

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Tis The Season

“It is the duty of all men in society, publicly, and at stated
seasons, to worship the SUPREME BEING, the great Creator
and Preserver of the universe. And no subject shall be hurt,
molested, or restrained, in his person, liberty, or estate, for
worshipping GOD in the manner most agreeable to the dictates of
his own conscience; or for his religious profession or sentiments;
provided he doth not disturb the public peace, or obstruct others
in their religious worship.”
— John Adams (Thoughts on Government, 1776)

This quote, courtesy of The Patriot Post, along with the fast approach of the holidays, got me to wondering … wondering what was said word for word in the Constitution regarding “religion”. So to refresh my five active brain cells, I looked it up. Couldn’t have been easier, the first line of the first amendment and all.

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”
– First Amendment to the United States Constitution

So, in plain English, it states the legislative branch can’t make any laws in respect to ANY religion, in placing it above (or by my reckoning, below) any other, in the eyes of “the State”. They also cannot prohibit anyone from practicing their faith … the exception to this being when the practice of same places another’s life/liberty/property in jeopardy.
Indeed, even the ersatz religion of submission, otherwise known as Islam, by the first amendment, is allowable. However, (and this will cause the progressives to get their knickers in a knot for sure) being we are “at war” with (at the very least) the more extreme practitioners of said “faith”, perhaps it is time to take some much needed and stronger measures regarding Islam.
Can we do this? Yes, we have the technology. Should we do it? Sure! Precedence has been established regarding groups who have posed as potential threats, while still affording them the right to peaceful assembly, (assuming they haven’t broken existing laws) and freedom of speech. As has been done to various Communist, neo-nazi, and supremacist groups, perhaps monitoring of Mosques and other meeting places of said Islamists, would not be beyond the pale. (If, upon further review, said Mosque and attendees were found to be free of ties to terrorists/terrorism, and or were morphing into something more benign then any of the current forms of Islam, they would be left alone.)
Practice/follow what you will, but allow me the same opportunity. This is what Adams was saying above, and what the first amendment seeks to grant. So why do the atheists take offense to the majority of this country seeking to follow their respective flavors of Judaism/Christianity? Most people in any given town accept Christ as their savior and seek to celebrate his birth in late December. This used to result in there being decorations of the season (of both a secular and sacred nature) placed through out said town, usually with a nativity scene placed in the town square. It was a nod to the majority ofcitizens of said town … of their shared commonality in faith. It was NOT meant to be a statement of “Our faith is better then yours” (or better then your desire to involve yourself in no faith at all). A good case in point? Well, a number of years back, I happened to the good people of Skokie, IL. had a large menorah, off the main drag in town, lit up during the Season of Hanukkah. Being there is a large (if not majority) in town that are of either Jewish lineage and or practice said faith, it shouldn’t be surprising. And it is as it should be. (Nor can I ever remember a group of Christians massing around the Skokie city hall demanding the removal of same.)
The followers/practitioners of those religions/faiths/philosophies which are in the minority have the right to practice same (as stated above). What they don’t have (although it has been accorded to them because of progressives agendas) is the right to restrict the majorities acknowledging what part their respective faiths have played in the development, and implementation of, the foundation of this great nation.
Crossposted at Cigar Intelligence Agency

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