The Bible answers that question in JEREMIAH 17:9. “The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked: who can know it? I the Lord search the heart.” That Bible verse indicates that people are born with that kind of heart. I am not talking about the big muscle that pumps our blood and keeps us alive. I believe that means the heart of our souls.
Columns & Editorials
Dear Aunt B,
Recently I got to meet a gem of a man named Edward Grady from Ennis, Texas. He is the father of 12 kids. Six are grown and six live at home. To make ends meet raising all of those kids he picks up scrap metal and sells it. Edward’s work ethic, punctuality and kindness are remarkable. Of course, there is a story about how I met him and I will gladly pass it along.
Over the years, I have heard several teachers jokingly share how sorry they felt for their first-year students. “I know those kids didn’t learn a thing! I had no idea what I was doing!” they exclaimed. I can relate except I had a paraprofessional who taught me everything I needed to know about keeping data, documentation and important aspects of a teacher’s job. Without Cookie Renfrow, I would have been lost my first year of teaching. Unfortunately, not every first-year teacher has a Cookie Renfrow to be their rear-guard.
Sometimes Christian life is like a see-saw. The world is on one end and Christians are on the other. When Christians go down the world goes up. When Christians go up the world goes down. When Christians goes up they are closer to GOD and the world begins to fade and become less attractive. The question is how can Christians stay up above the world? First a Christian should try to think and act like Jesus. He was firm in His life while was on earth teaching and preaching to the people. He was kind and loving toward all people. He saved people that should have been rejected. He was not afraid of anyone or anything. He never lost sight of His mission. His plan was made before creation and He carried it out to the letter.
Dear Aunt B Readers,
Dear Aunt B Readers,
It was 2010. MySpace was all but shuttered. There was a new social media addiction in town, something called Facebook. Once a place for lewd, online collegiate judging of the appearance of others (seriously, how vile), like the ultimate hot or not expose, Facebook was suddenly THE place for informing the masses what you planned on eating for lunch, why you disliked your job, and what makes you tick, according to a 52 point questionnaire where you were cajoled into revealing titillating info like your favorite lunchmeat and the names of the people you thought would be first to post their riveting answers to life. And, then, it happened. The clock struck midnight on 10/31 one year and we were all catapulted from quizzes who assigned you your official chosen Sanderson sister, based on your favorite style of architecture and whether or not you preferred apple cider over hot chocolate, to a barrage of daily mountaintop shout outs to, GULP, what you are grateful for, anyway. And, in typical social media style, if you don’t post about it, you clearly don’t really care about anything worthwhile, do you? This led to parttime jobs for all of us, dare we be viewed as ungrateful for the entire month of November, the thankiest holiday there ever was. “Today I’m thankful for my kids.” Really Sue? Were you actually contemplating posting something about your ability to take them or leave them? Worse were those folks who just couldn’t remember to post daily. “Have y’all noticed that Margaret only posted one time last week?” Never fear, Margaret will soon have 2 glasses of Merlot on a Friday night and give us the novel post on daily gratitude items that will take longer to read than Tolstoy. The hamster wheel of proving gratefulness was greased by the oil of peer pressure and the fluid of self-doubt. What am I saying, that manufacturing false gratitude for the purpose of “earning” a most grateful badge on social media isn’t really the purpose of practicing a habit of gratitude? Bingo.
Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor-- and whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness.
It appears the uncertainty and inconsistency in public education is getting to be too much for educators across Texas. A decline in student behavior is a growing concern. Many north Texas teachers have taken to social media to lament a significant increase in negative student behavior with little authority or administrative support to manage it effectively. Teacher absences are adding to current concerns in education. Overcrowded classes are being split between teachers who are present, often leaving unqualified aides/paraprofessionals responsible for teaching students.
It may not be easy for Christians to praise GOD in this time of trouble, but I think this is the time we should praise Him the most. GOD told us long ago that these times were coming and we should not be amazed or fear. Think about the time when Jesus will call all true Christians up to meet Him in the air. It may be a long time off, but I can’t help but believe it is coming soon. I may not have lived a perfect life for GOD, but His promise to us is that we are saved and safe forever. How could any promise be better than that? I can praise GOD because He always seems to be at His best when I am at my worst. That does not mean that we get by with our sins, but it means that GOD has given us forgiveness as long as we live in these bodies. I should say that we still pay for the sin we commit here in this life. That is, if we do something to ruin our health GOD will forgive us for the sin, but He will “not” restore health to our bodies. If I eat enough sweet stuff to rot my teeth out, GOD will forgive me for eating wrong, but He will not make us new teeth. The dentist has to do that. I praise GOD because He is totally just and perfect and does not deal with us according to our sins, but according to His prefect love for us. I can’t understand that but I know it is true.
Has GOD abandoned America? No: I don’t think GOD would abandon any nation when they call out and turn to Him. Also I don’t believe GOD would abandon any person if they do the same.
Dear Aunt B,
Once upon a time, I was in charge of training work resource solution professionals (the nonpc term would be staffing company salespeople) for a 6-state radius. I taught them important things like how to get past the receptionist, how to figure out who the decision-maker in that company is in the first place, how to present yourself as the solution to a problem, and, most importantly, how not to get thrown out of an office building. It was a great deal of fun. People respond well to people that want to help them, as I did. Also, when a salesperson doesn’t have to do any selling for a few days and they get free lunches, they’re typically super happy. The training material was top notch, too. I still use it to navigate daily life. For instance, if you’re going to sit down with someone who has the power to either give or deny their business to you, it’s best if you’re able to make a great first impression. Unless you are familiar with their company culture, show up looking like a blank slate. Be bland. Dress for a funeral. Don’t wear anything avant garde, right down to the nail polish color and the portfolio you carry. Make sure the backs of your shoes look polished and that your hem is on point. Mimic your contact’s body language. Subliminally, they’ll see you as being like them. If you’re like them, they will like you. People only buy from people they like. And, definitely, know your stuff. If they’re a publicly traded company, know their stock value. Find out how many locations they have, total number of employees, etc. Who are their competitors? And, lastly, always always always know their mission statement so you can work key points into casual conversation. Trust me on this. Whether you’re interviewing for a new position, or you need to persuade anyone concerning anything, know what makes them tick. Use it against them. All is fair in love and business meetings.
The Layden Senior Citizens Center of Forney welcomes you at 101 Main Street in City Hall; open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Please enter the front or through Handicap accessible doors located at the back of City Hall where reserved parking for seniors is also available.