As a fighter pilot and father of five, I’ve had the privilege to watch my wife enlist into service as a homeschooling mom. I quickly learned that she would be engaged in combat far more than I ever would be as a fighter pilot. Every mom and dad brave enough to follow the calling of a fighter parent must become skilled in the art of basic homeschool maneuvering. [Read more…]
Farewell for now to a fighter
His presence did grace
Throughout every clime
And in every place
From a special design
Was he breathed unto life
Whose words mended the broken
And cut like a knife
He came not with treaties
Nor flags to lay down
But with double-edged sword
Risen o’er his crown
Mors ex Tenebris
His motto lay claim
To the vacant position
Where evil once lay
From darkness and shadows
Death waits for us all
In a groaning creation
Still marred by the fall
But it wasn’t once so
And it won’t be again
For as then it was good
So it is in the end
The Heavens were stretched
To the warrior’s delight
And with grey-winged chariots
O’er water they fight
His eyes n’er rest upon
Ribbons or fame
And his treasures are stored
Where no thief can lay claim
His kin cannot follow
They must stay behind
As he hardens his body
And strengthens his mind
But the bandit gives chase
And strikes at his heel
Whilst brother fights brother
And steel sharpens steel
His frame he contorts
To keep sight of the foe
Blood seeps from his brow
For the weeping below
He gave up his spirit
And the veil’s top he tore
While losing the battle
But winning the war
Tho’ death from the darkness
And shadows doth wait
It’s defeated inside
Of the Heavenly gate
So farewell for now to a fighter
His time here is never enough
His beloved will long for his presence
His children will have to be tough
His legacy will be remembered
For love was the reason he came
And we’ll meet in a glorious hereafter
In a world with no tears and no pain
In memory of Marine Captain Reid Nannen, a fellow Bat. May your family find comfort in knowing that this is not the end.
If you would like to help support his family in their time of need, you can give HERE
Help by sharing the link to the Captain Reid Nannen Memorial Children’s Fund on Twitter by clicking HERE
Photos Courtesy of Satoshi Hirokawa
What is love? Here are two possibilities:
- chemical reactions in your brain perceived as feelings of loyalty toward a single co-parent for the purpose of rearing a child together, at least until it’s weaned
- the ultimate good, a reflection of the image of God upon humanity
Arguments often arise by using the same words to mean different things. One worldview (Christianity) views love as the ultimate good in the material world and beyond.
Let’s look at how love is viewed by two different worldviews: Christianity and naturalism.
On Christianity, love is ultimately:
- the state of affairs existing prior to the creation of the universe, flowing between the Father and the Son via the Holy Spirit, the vehicle of love
- the highest good
- the ultimate goal, an act of worship.
On naturalism, love is ultimately:
- the evolutionary mechanism to ensure the survival of children and the propagation of our species
- a nice concept, something to distract you from the depressing thought of a meaningless existence
- an amusing illusion
Your worldview will shape how you understand the concept of love.
Should we describe amorous behavior in the same manner Dawkins describes religious behavior, as “a misfiring, an unfortunate by-product of an underlying psychological propensity which in other circumstances is, or once was, useful?”²
Or is love in all its forms a gift from God?
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind”
as commanded in Matthew 22:37?
Is loving your neighbor as yourself a holy commandment, or an optional attitude?
Jesus tells His disciples in John 15:13 :
“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”
In this context, sacrificial love is one of the highest virtues.
On naturalism, sacrificial love should be selected for extinction. Only the less self-sacrificial should survive. Eventually the gene for self-sacrifice would be gone forever.
But it’s not.
Medal of Honor recipient Corporal Jason Dunham jumped on a grenade to save his fellow Marines from immanent death.
District Court Judge Mitchell McLean gave his life while trying to save a woman from drowning.
Nineteen brave firefighters gave their lives fighting an Arizona wildfire to protect others from harm.
After all these years, the spirit of love is well intact.
You don’t have to be able to explain love in order to give it.
But if you understand it properly, you might want to give a whole lot more.
What’s your conclusion? Greatest gift from God, or amusing illusion?
- A Father’s Legacy: Memories From a Thankful Son
- America is Beautiful: Is it Still Okay to Love Her?
- The Secret to Success: Improve Your Life in Five Words
¹ Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion (New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 2006), 185.
² Ibid., 174.
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
How do you explain the presence of evil in the world?
Memorial Day marks the moment when we honor our nation’s fallen heroes. Their bravery and sacrifice comes from a response to evil men and natural disasters.
Lately, the flag flies at half-mast more often for new tragedies than for old ones. At least, it feels that way. It is an appropriate time to examine the topic of evil and suffering.
Some deal with evil by denying its reality. Others brush it off as illusory. Does evil exist? If so, where does it come from?
Are we born with evil woven into the fabric of our being, or is it a learned behavior? We’ll start with some basic concepts. There are two kinds of evil:
- Moral Evil: moral evil exists strictly in the human realm. Whenever we speak of this kind of evil, it is either raised by a person, or about a person. Notice that it does not apply to other animals. Dog lovers will tell you there are no bad dogs. I agree with them. Only human beings can freely choose right and wrong.
- Natural Evil: this kind of evil exists in nature. Examples include the tsunami which struck Japan and the recent tornado in Oklahoma.
Both kinds of evil cause human pain and suffering. Why is there such evil and suffering in the world? Here are three explanations from competing worldviews:
- Suffering is caused by desire. Therefore, eliminate all desire and you will eliminate suffering. What happens when you eliminate your desire to eliminate all desire? This philosophy is self-defeating.
- Evil is not real. Try telling that to a grieving parent. This philosophy does not correspond to the human experience.
- Evil is the result of man’s wrongful use of free will. The potentiality of evil was a necessary condition for humans to have free will. Humans actualized that potential by making wrong choices. This philosophy is logically plausible and explains why the world is not as it should be.
What comfort can you provide when tragedy strikes? Are you able to provide hope to the suffering?
The words are few in times of mourning. But morning will come, and the questions will begin.
What will you say?
- Veterans Day: Thanking Military Veterans and Kingdom Veterans
- America is Beautiful: Is it Still Okay to Love Her?
- 9/11: Remembering the Consequence of a Ruthless Worldview
Photo credit: William D. Moss / Public Domain