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    On Monday I voice my frustration with the rapid decline of moral standards for television. I was surprised to see the response. With my education in marketing, I have a tendancy to do market research. This means I watch to see what demographic of people (geographically) and how many view my blog. An average post of mine gets around 125 people view it and maybe one or two comments. On Monday more than 500 people saw it in 22 states and five countries. The thoughts must have struck a chord with some people.
    Tuesday was equally impressive with 120 visitors. Then Wednesday I didn't look and it (down to 24) and went back to my normal routine. Wait... what? I just got done speaking of the change that is need and followed it with... normal? I am ashamed. After reading the last post, how many episode of TV did you watch? How many hours of video games did you play? How many good books were read, or minutes in reflection and prayer? My answers hurt my soul, I would imagine many of yours did too.
    After reading the book The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell, I became fascinated with epidemics. I don't mean the disease kind, but the "everyone has, does, or knows 'x' idea seemingly within a matter of hours. But 500 people does not change the thoughts and minds of a nation. With the Lenten season coming up (starts next week) I propose a challenge. If you haven't read my last post, do that first. The challenge is this: Let's shut off the tv, video games, useless internet times, and apps on the phone, and read or write a letter to a friend. It is a "wasted time" fast. But there is one more part to the challenge. Let people know about it. Write your experience on here of the results of this break. We are not alone in our thoughts of desiring change. SHARE, COMMENT, TALK so we know how "un"alone we really are.
    Could something as simple as sharing a blog, commenting, and reading help a country? Probably not. But it will most definitely help you. No more going back to routine after getting passionate about things that are wrong. It's time to change. Below are videos that hurt to watch. Excuse the expletives used in the first, but it makes a point.

I do not own the rights to these videos

 
 
    In the mid 1700's, few colonial Americans knew about the drastic transformations that would occur by the turn of the century. In his book, Freedom Shift, Oliver DeMille talks about what it took for the one of the greatest movements of freedom in history to unfold. The common perception is that everyone living in the fledgling colonies was angry with England. In reality only about 2 or 3% of the population of that day had any part in starting and carrying out the American Revolution. It was just a small group of committed men who signed their lives away on the Declaration of Independence. These men changed the world.

    I have the privilege of meeting with a small group of young men on Friday mornings before they head off to their high school classrooms. Each one of them has a passion for bettering the world around them by first bettering themselves. They make me better by their presence. There is a greatness about them that is uncommon. I do not fear for our future with such good men coming to lead. Their names are as follows: Nick, William, Clark, Gary, Tommy B, Grant, Tommy H, Cam, Mitch, Adam, Mack, Bo, Carter, Jake, and Jimmy. Others I am sure will join this group for the sheer fact of associating with awesomeness.

    DeMille puts a stress on three things that need to happen to allow freedom to reign: a small group of committed people who are 1) veracious readers/independent thinkers, 2) successful entrepreneurs, and 3) tribal leaders. The guys I spend time with have the capacity to be the type of people who can change the world like the signer of the Declaration of Independence. Are you willing to become the type of person it takes to change the world? If your answer is yes, let's talk.

I encourage you to read The Declaration of Independence as a reminder of the world the founding fathers tried to create: http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/declaration_transcript.html 
 
 
     Thanks to recent events I have had to consider things unimaginable. The thoughts
 of what had to occur in the previous decades to allow such heinous acts, such unspeakable evil to occur
to the most innocent. The repetition of such evil frustrates me. Yes, the loss
of innocent lives angers me, but I cringe after each event for another reason.    
       
     We hear stories of evil acting out in third world countries in ways that
scare us like demons and witchcraft. We hear of miraculous healings and people
coming to know God in amazing ways as well. There they call detestable things by
their rightful name: evil. Here we say let’s get more laws, more security, less
guns, more guns, mental health programs, etc… but things continue to get worse.
Evil more boldly shows its face in America with each passing day.            
     
     Yet after all of these current events I read in Ecclesiastes that says
there is nothing new under the sun. So why does it seem that our culture is
fading quickly into the moral abyss?  I look at the founding fathers of our
once great nation and see dozens of men of integrity who gave everything for the
freedom of all the people. Today I see millions of people who give little (if
anything) and expect more handouts. The founding fathers did everything they
could to uphold what was right, not what was easy. I RESOLVE to do what is right
no matter what the level of difficulty. I will work. I will love. And I will grow.

               
Darkness cannot exist where light shines. So let your light shine before
men, and watch them glow in your presence for they see a glimps of God's love.
 Here is some light to shine into your day: my nephew Liam