This is Viewpoints for Friday, June 6, 2017

June 6, 2014 

It doesn’t work that way

I know I’m going to ruffle some feathers and probably not be invited to the parties, but I can’t sit by and watch the drama unfold without filling in the blanks. The whole time I was on City Council and at every budget hearing, we would tell the not-for-profits “the taxpayers cannot continue to foot the bill.” Every year we would tell them they needed to be more self-sufficient and every year their budgets would increase. They’ve got directors making more than $100,000 a year whose main job is to raise money and to operate within their means. No one is doing it.

They have relied for years on the government bailing them out. It use to be they would go to the county and beg and then come to the city and beg and play both governments against each other. Thank goodness that’s over now. This budget that the mayor put together should not have been a surprise to anyone. The same people who supported consolidation and a “reduction” in government spending are now saying, “don’t hurt my pet project.” It doesn’t work that way.

The mayor and commission need to be thinking of the 160,000 taxpayers first and fulfilling the promise to reduce government spending. I hope the new commission will finally say, “the government has given you a hand up, and now we can’t continue to give you a handout.” There, I didn’t need a half-page editorial to let the taxpayers know the rest of the story.

-- J. Michael. Cranford

Macon

Healing of brokenness

Everyday The Telegraph reveals the brokenness of Middle Georgia, the nation, the world. Human suffering is intensifying rapidly around the world.

In her May 7 column, Catherine Meeks says, “In this violent land we have created, we need to be searching for ways to stem the tide. What is it going to take for us to begin to understand that violence breeds violence? We continue to fight war after war both on our own streets and in other lands, and yet there is no end in sight to the need for more violence. We are addicted to violence. The only remedy to addiction is abstinence and that takes courage and commitment.”

Meeks columns are interesting to read and she frequently promotes her Christian beliefs as Christians should, yet she offers no biblical solutions to sinful addictions. She says truthfully and intellectually that the only remedy to addiction is abstinence. Everyone believes that. But where does abstinence come from? How can a person achieve victory over addictions that are anchored in every persons sinful thoughts, words and deeds?

Our nation and the world is diminishing rapidly because people want what they want, they decide what is right and what is wrong. The only war, personal, local or international, is the war of ideas. Conflicts are in politics also. My Christian friend, Jon Gary Branan, stated in his recent Telegraph letter, “Better bosses” that “our representatives in government have abandoned the notion that their job is to reflect the will of the people.” They refuse to work together because they demand what they want.

A deeply born again holy spirit filled United Methodist Bishop Kenneth Goodson, at a Kentucky ministers conference in the late 1960s said, “You cannot destroy an idea with a bullet or a bomb. You can destroy an idea only by presenting a better idea.”

Christianity has a better idea, the only remedy for the abstinence of sinful addiction. The remedy can cause us to love every person in the world regardless of our differences in race, beliefs, opinions, religions, lifestyles. We will want to treat them the same way we would want them to treat us. The remedy will cause us to love God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength and our neighbors as ourselves. The Christian remedy can give us the assurance of our presence with God when this life is deceased.

The remedy of biblical faith upon which America was founded, and is now diminishing, is the gospel of Jesus Christ centered in his death and resurrection. Read and put faith and trust in I Cor.15:1-11. It’s true.

-- The Rev. Richard Aultman

Byron

Win-win

The Bible has always been the basis for Christian doctrine and instruction. Therefore, I agree with Louis Kitchens’ statement that homosexuality is a sin. I agree because it is not his opinion, it is written in the Bible. True Christians’ belief is that the Bible is inerrant because God inspired man to write it.

I am truly puzzled as to why ministers continue to preach messages from this Bible or people continue to attend churches that use the Bible if they do not believe what is written in the Bible. Why not just grab any old book and deliver a message based on feelings and opinions?

The Bible specifically states that God created male and female and also gave them the physical make-up to carry out his purpose. Intimate relationships between a male and female was supposed to be a special and natural occurrence, which is why God said they are no longer two but one. God gave male and female the ability to express love in the most intimate way while fulfilling his purpose of procreation. The creation according to God can be found in the Bible in the book of Genesis.

As far as homosexuality is concerned, the Bible states in Leviticus 18:22 that man lying with man is an abomination. Also, Romans 1 tells us the consequence of the sin when men lie with men and women with women. I say that today we are worse off than Sodom and Gomorrah because they were just cities that God destroyed because of the sin of homosexuality, among other sins. We are not only condoning this sin in this nation but we are attempting to spread it all around the world. This nation is trying to make what is sin and unnatural natural and acceptable by passing laws that are totally in opposition to the Bible. According to the Bible there are dire consequences for any nation that does this.

For the record, my belief in the Bible as being the word of God has no bearing on my feelings concerning one who practices unnatural sex or any sin. I respect them, love them and sorrow for them as human beings. I sorrow because I believe what the Bible states as the consequences for those who practice sin, not to mention the abominable one. Biblical scriptures teach us that everyone is a sinner. That’s why the world needs Jesus Christ as savior. We must first recognize that we are sinners and then ask Jesus through prayer to help us to overcome sin as much as humanly possible; this is called repentance.

I vow to accept the Bible as the true word of God until death. That would be a win-win situation for me; even if it is not the case. However, if it is true, those who did not accept it as God’s word and respond accordingly will most definitely lose.

-- Patricia Evans

Fort Valley

VA solution

The very quickest and best solution to the Veterans Administration hospitals would be for all employers be required to be honorably discharged veterans or spouses of deceased veterans. Their positive attitude would surely prove to take care of each other. The top man in Washington should be a 30-year Marine E-9, no officers and all hospital directors at least E-7 or E-8. You could bet there would be an honor guard at each hospital door.

-- Chuck Fleenor

Warner Robins

Customer service

We have lived here for 31 years with a 10-year gap. As other homeowners, we have replaced heating and cooling systems, doing again several days ago. A few days later, a Macon-Bibb County code inspector visited to check compliance. He found two omissions, one minor, one significant. He reported such to the installer and three days later the shortcomings were corrected. Our thanks to inspector Greg Howard and our consolidated government for this service we had not experienced before. Now, if we can get such from the bureaucrats at state and county tax assessor offices.

-- Jerry and Sharon Smith

Macon-Bibb County

No threat

Keith Ryals in his Tuesday, June 3 comment is wrong. The survival of democracy was never threatened and was not an issue during the American Civil War. Both sides were equally committed to democracy as it existed during the 19th century.

-- Jim Sandefur

Lizella

Today’s prayer

Father, you know our every thought even before we think it. Help us to control our thoughts in obedience to you. You tell us in your word how to live a godly life. The way of the cross leads home. It is so simple if only we will obey. Amen.

-- Alice M. Pritchett

Hawkinsville

Readers -- ministers, rabbis, priests and laypersons alike are invited to contribute prayers to this weekly feature. Mail them to “Prayer,” The Telegraph, P.O. Box 4167, Macon, GA 31213; or fax to (478) 744-4385; or e-mail letters@macon.com.

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