The older I get the more impressed I am by the public education I received in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Within the university realm, I have always been and continue to be thoroughly prepared to face the difficulties of college calculus (Mrs. Romberger), the rigors of Biblical Greek (Mrs. Lavelle), and the realities of Theories of Popular Culture (Miss Smith). I am most certainly grateful to all my teachers over the years.
However, I have been far and away the most grateful for my schooling in English, both reading and writing, grammar, vocabulary and spelling. Well done Ms. Kopas, Mr. Blanchard, and all the rest of you! Thank you!
I'll tell you why I'm the most grateful to these people.
In this new age of mass media, texting (blah, blah, blah, how sick are we of hearing bloggers describe this stage in history), the people of my generation (age 28 and older) are amused, confused, depressed about this younger generation's grasp on normal human communication.
Unfortunately, we are not all so amused, confused and depressed, that we don't participate. We all buy into it, so much so that a friend's eighth grade sister recently told her that "Facebook is for old people.
All of this fast-paced, incessant information dissemination has vastly changed the way our culture packages ideas, receives messages, processes data, and ultimately, how we draw conclusions.
Personally, I think that the worst consequence of so much media is that people have genuinely begun to think in sound bites. One liners. Humorous, ironic, biting one-liners. Most regularly, half-truth one-liners.
These partially true, funny statements are so prevalent on twitter, facebook, (the bottom of nationally aired news broadcasts), that I really believe our country (and oh please not the world, but potentially the world) have begun to take half-truth one-liners as full-fledged arguments for a particular position on an issue.
How is this related to my high school English teachers? It is related, because these wonderful men and women taught me to think, to consider, to reason, to evaluate. They taught me to process lengthy material rather than lazily clinging to one tantalizing sentence.
When I graduated high school, my favorite books were Brave New World, 1984, The Catcher and the Rye, and The Fountainhead.
This is hilarious, especially when you attempt to reconcile the ideas put forth in these novels with those fundamental to Christianity. Somehow in wading through post-modern, autruism I ended up believing that the Bible is the living, inerrant Word of God, and that the Christian God is the one true God, creator of heaven and earth.
Friends, Readers, Randos: I beg you. Engage in an exercise that the majority of this world has engaged in since the beginning of time, an exercise that was fully encouraged by my English teachers and probably yours. This exercise is the exercise of THINKING!
I beg you. Do not decide your own positions on important matters simply through the lens of half-truth one-liners.
I beg you. Look around, process information and think for yourselves. A benefit of the internet is incredible resources at your fingertips. Dig thru some of this stuff.
I beg you. READ!
As you can probably surmise from this title, the issue I'm am begging you to consider is abortion.
I beg you. Find out what is really going on within every single abortion that is performed. EVERY SINGLE ONE.
I have always been Pro-Life; however, I have not always had such a significant grasp and understanding of the absolute horror that is involved in abortion, you know, the way the "procedure" actually occurs. Y'all, it is terrifying! However, I can understand that believing for yourself may require you seeing, hearing, and reading for yourself.
Look. Listen. Read.
I have been experiencing a newfound burden for this in my heart recently. I've been reading everything I can get my hands (eyes) on. As a starter for you, I have attached some links.
Click around. Read. Think.
On a final note, I would like to end this post with something that John Piper mentions in one of these links. It's this.
The gospel of Jesus Christ is the message that God himself physically entered into human history in order to redeem a fallen humanity out of pure love for them, "that whoever believes in him, will not perish but have eternal life."
The gospel of Jesus Christ is a message of forgiveness for all who repent and believe.
The gospel of Jesus Christ is a message of light, life, and love.
As John Piper notes, the gospel of Jesus Christ is the only message that seeks to save and protect life on the front end of this issue (before an abortion takes place), and the ONLY message that can completely and perfectly bring healing and forgiveness on the other end (after an abortion has taken place).
If you have had an abortion, the gospel of Jesus Christ still has a message for you. It's this. "Christ died for sinners." He came and died for sinners. Nothing, "neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present, nor the future, nor any powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." If you repent of your sin and believe in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you will be forgiven.
Here are some articles that I have been reading lately:
Both this article and this article are discussing the fact that Pro-Choice advocates understand that their stance involves killing a true human life.
This article looks at the new face of the Pro-Life Movement.
John Piper has been speaking against abortion for 30 years. Here he discusses some of his experiences.
This video is really difficult to watch, and yet, we should not turn a blind eye. Y'all ... if you are not convinced, you have to watch this.
This sermon is phenomenal! Seriously, it is absolutely incredible. I couldn't link you directly to the sermon, so I got you as far as I could on their website. On the page that opened, click on 2011 Sermons. Then, Jan. 23. The title is "Bible vs. World: Sanctity of Human Life" by Tom Hawkes.
If you need help, this is a wikipedia page for the Crisis Pregnancy Center. Find a local one in your area.
Lesson Learned: Over 50 MILLION babies have been aborted in the womb since 1973. Words cannot accurately describe this tragedy. I am on a journey to figure out my own place in ending it all.