Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Voting Independently

Yesterday I went and voted early. Although most anyone who has had any type of political conversation with me for more then three minutes is likely to know exactly how I voted, because I used an accessible voting machine no one but me can be certain of how I voted. Since the introduction of accessible voting machines in 2006 I have been able to vote independently. For those who take this for granted I would suggest they think how they would feel if, no matter how well meaning, they had to rely on someone of the opposite political view to mark your ballot. For some this is a necessity, but not for the blind. The accessible voting machine I used had buttons clearly marked in Braille, and I was able to operate it easily in mere moments. The selection of my choices on the machine was straightforward, and once I understood the layout of how each race was run I was able to quickly and easily select my options. I reviewed the ballot and submitted it, all within twenty minutes.

I am happy to have voted in 2012, and I am almost as pleased to have been able to do so independently and easily. I hope everyone who votes, particularly the blind, may have an equally straightforward experience. Remember, if you don't vote, you can't rant.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Friday Prayers

Sharing prayer requests for this week from VOM.

"Prayer is the pulse of life; by it the doctor can tell what is the condition of the heart. The sin of prayerlessness is a proof for the ordinary Christian or minister that the life of God in the soul is in deadly sickness and weakness." - Andrew Murray "praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints" - Ephesians 6:18 VOM-USA Prayer Update for October 19, 2012 On Thu. Oct 18 2012 at 03:26 PM Moderator wrote: Philippines--Philippine Government and Rebels Make a Deal Source: BBC News Colossians 1:11 The Philippine government reached a peace deal with the largest Muslim terror group last week, ending 40 years of conflict between the two groups. The government conceded another autonomous region in Mindanao to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). While most Filipinos are Catholics, in the Mindanao region, Muslims are the majority. The MILF has long agitated for an independent state, but the agreement to give Bangasamoro leaders more political and economic freedom appears to have pacified them. What is not clear, is how this will affect Christians in the Mindanao region. Christians have long been the victims of violence and land-grabs. Pray for the protection of Christians in the region, that God will strengthen them in his power. Iran--Another Christian Convert to Spend Six Years in Evin Prison Sources: VOM Contacts Romans 5:3 A Christian convert from Islam was sentenced to six years in prison after he was charged with crimes against the regime and caught trying to flee the country. Alireza Seyyedian, 37, has been a Christian since 2006. Last year, authorities found a video of his baptism in Turkey on his laptop, which had been seized in a raid. In December 2011, he was charged with crimes against national security and propaganda against the regime. The judge cited his baptism in Turkey as evidence that Alireza was trying to express dissatisfaction with the regime. He was also accused of hosting a house church and distributing Bibles to youth. In March, Alireza was caught fleeing to Turkey, and was brought back to Iran to Evin prison. He is being held in the section for political prisoners. Pray for Alireza. Ask God to strengthen his faith and give him endurance. Indonesia--Bomb Attacks Revive Church Fears Source: Release International, BBC News, The Jakarta Globe 1 John 4:18 Bomb attacks on Christian targets in the city of Poso have revived painful memories of religious violence in Central Sulawesi. Explosives were detonated outside a Christian's home just after 8 p.m. on Oct. 9 -- then, about an hour later, a bomb went off outside Imanuel Church in nearby Taripa, Pamona Timur. Police said the house targeted in the first attack was that of Okrifil Mamuaya, a Christian working for the local government. No one was injured in the blasts -- but they have alarmed Christians in an area blighted by religious conflict in the past. Groups such as Laskar Jihad have carried out jihad, or holy war, against Christian communities, particularly in the Moluccas and Central Sulawesi between 1999 and 2002. Pray that Christians in Poso and other parts of Central Sulawesi will know God's peace and love. Thank God that His perfect love drives out fear. Vietnam--VOM Project Pray for tribal Christian training centers operating in Vietnam. The centers provide materials and training for 400 rural and tribal Christian pastors with the goal of strengthening house churches in rural areas, which face more persecution.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Friday Prayers

Wanted to share the below.

"Prayer is the pulse of life; by it the doctor can tell what is the condition of the heart. The sin of prayerlessness is a proof for the ordinary Christian or minister that the life of God in the soul is in deadly sickness and weakness." - Andrew Murray "praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints" - Ephesians 6:18 VOM-USA Prayer Update for October 12, 2012 On Thu. Oct 11 2012 at 03:47 PM Moderator wrote: Central Asia--Sewing Machines Help Make Gospel Outreach Possible Source: VOM Contacts James 1:17 Ten Christian women in a Central Asian country received sewing machines that will help them generate an income for their families. "Thank you for your blessing," wrote one of the sewing machine recipients. "We wanted to buy a good sewing machine for a long time, but we didn't have funds. It will help us to earn money and to bless other church members." Nearly all the sewing machine recipients mentioned that they will also use the machines to bless other church members with clothing and linens. These families live in an area where potential employers first ask if job applicants are Christians. If the job applicants say they are, they will not be hired. Each of these families is involved in ministry. The sewing businesses will also allow them to be flexible with their work hours so they have more opportunity for ministry. One mother of four who received a sewing machine wrote, "I will teach my children, and we will serve our church and neighbors with a practical gospel." Thank you for your part in blessing these women with sewing machines. Praise God for his work in Central Asia. Kenya--Boy Dies in Al-Shabaab Attack on Church Sources: VOM Contacts, Release International 1 Peter 1:6–7 A grenade tossed near the Sunday school area of ACK Polycarp Church in Nairobi on Sunday, Sept. 30 took the life of a 9-year-old boy and injured several more severely. John Ian Maina suffered fatal injuries in the explosion that happened as he waited around 10:25 a.m. with a group of other children for Sunday school to start. Police had just warned the previous day that al-Shabaab was planning retaliatory attacks in the country following the capture of Kismayu port by the Kenya Defense Forces in southern Somalia. St. Polycarp's is near Eastleigh, a district of Nairobi popularly known as "Little Mogadishu" due to its many Somali immigrants. The bomb left a six-inch deep, 12-inch wide hole in the floor. Pray for Christians in Kenya, who are increasingly subject to harm at the hands of al-Shabaab militants from Somalia. Nigeria--Students Shot to Death in Apparent Boko Haram Attack Source: BBC News, Release International Mark 13:24 Twenty-two students were shot dead or stabbed at a Federal Polytechnic University in northeastern Nigeria in Adamawa state Oct. 2 by suspected Boko Haram militants. Just after midnight, men in military uniform entered a residence hall and called some students by name. The students were marched out of their rooms and lined up outside the building. Some were shot, and others were knifed. Their bodies were left lying in lines. Some of the dead were Muslims, while others were Christians. Police aren't sure why the 22 students and three security guards were killed, though the military arrested dozens of people suspected of Boko Haram links days earlier. Cell towers in the area were recently attacked by Boko Haram, making getting information out of the area difficult. One of the students told BBC News, "Everybody is scared." Pray God will show his power in defeating Boko Haram and that members of the group will turn to Christ. China--VOM Project Pray for those involved in a digital Bible project. Digital music players are loaded with audio New Testaments, portions of the Old Testament, VOM books and hymns.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Meet the Blind on the 16th Street Mall

Wanted to make all aware of the below. Got to love Meet the Blind Month!

Meet and Greet on 16th Street! Monday October 15th 7:30am-6:00pm As many of you are aware, October is Meet the Blind Month. This is OUR opportunity to show the community that we are CONFIDENT, COMPITENT, AND INDEPENDENT individuals who share way more similarities with our peers than differences! In order to show off our AWESOMENESS to the downtown dwellers of Denver, the Mile High and Denver chapters are working with the NFB of Colorado state affiliate to have an ALL DAY Meet and Greet on the 16th street mall. On Monday, October 15th, we will be meeting at 16th Street. and Stout at 7:30am and will be set up until 6:00pm. During this time, we will have a booth where we will hand out NFB of Colorado and Colorado Center for the blind literature, Brailing names, giving away candy, and may even have some fun tasks for folks to try out under sleep shades. People who are not working the booth will be sent with literature to nearby light rail stations where they can work the crowd and spread the GOOD word about blindness! This will be a WONDERFUL opportunity for members in the community to learn more about our organization and most importantly learn more about US! This is such a fantastic event, but it will only work if we have CONFIDENT, COMPITENT, and INDEPENDENT members available to represent our organization. Please consider signing up for one of the following shifts 7:30am-10:30am 10:00am-1:00pm 12:30pm-3:30pm 3:00pm-6:00pm Your support will make a HUGE impact on our ability to share the message that blindness is not a tragedy and that with the proper tools and training, blindness can be reduced to a mere physical nuisance. If you will be able to assist, please contact Jessica Beecham at jbeecham@cocenter.org or by phone at 303-778-1130 extension 223. In your correspondence, please be sure to include your name and the shift or shifts that you will be able to cover. LET’S MAKE THIS MEET AND GREET ON 16TH STREET THE BEST MEET THE BLIND EVENT IN THE NATION!!!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

A Blown Call and the Battle for Truth

Great entry from Crown. Had to share.

Blown Call Illustrates Battle for Truth If you think that truth is irrelevant and unwelcome in our culture today, consider this modern-day parable from professional football. Fans of America’s largest and most lucrative sport struggled with poor officiating through the first three Sundays of the 2012 season. But the faithful finally had enough of the “replacement referees” last week when the poorly trained fill-ins blew a game-changing last call on Monday Night Football. Packer defensive back M.D. Jennings clearly made a heroic interception in the end zone as time ran out, but the replacement refs awarded Seattle with a phantom touchdown and the win. It was the second, observable bad call in the play that should have favored the Packers. Game over. But not forgotten. With that single event, the sub-par officiating that had been evident across the league during the union referee lockout, suddenly mattered. For the league, the financial stakes were no longer limited to the union refs’ compensation demands. The dispute was causing even the most devoted fans to walk away, putting at risk the estimated $9 billion the NFL earns in annual revenue. Even President Barack Obama found time during his busy schedule to weigh in on the issue saying, “We’ve got to get our refs back.” Just three days after the infamous bad call, now referred to by pundits as “the Inaccurate Reception,” the regular referees were back on the job. All was considered right again in the world of big sports—fans happy, players happy, advertisers happy, owners happy. It is almost refreshing to be reminded on such a grand stage that the American people, and certainly NFL fans, appreciate truth when it counts. Christians can learn something from this. First: Consider the recent challenge to Chick-Fil-A owner Dan Cathy’s right to operate his business according to his personal religious beliefs. The Constitution protects Dan Cathy’s right to free speech and the freedom to practice his religion. Customers who are offended by his statements are free to eat lunch elsewhere. These freedoms should be championed and defended because they are derived from standards given to us by God. And if Dan Cathy can be attacked for his views and bullied, then so can any one of us. Media elites and even some politicians justified their trampling of Cathy’s Constitutional rights in the name of “tolerance,” defined and practiced as intolerance of faith. Yet the rule of law is the cornerstone of a free and orderly society. Without standards that are consistently and fairly applied, order becomes chaos. Leviticus 19:15 warns, “Do not pervert justice; do not show partiality to the poor or favoritism to the great, but judge your neighbor fairly.” When there are no longer common standards to determine right or wrong, might makes right and the freedoms we all enjoy are threatened. Second: Consider the difficulties that are arising as biblical standards of righteousness are removed from our schools, our courts, our businesses and our public policy and replaced with new standards of “tolerance” for everything but biblical values. Without reliable standards of right and wrong moderating our choices, we are vulnerable to the whims of political correctness. We can clearly see that inept referees calling an interception a touchdown is not good, and we can all understand the far greater threat to society if evil is celebrated as good and good punished as evil. That bad call cost replacement referees their temporary jobs. Will making man the central authority for moral judgments permanently cost us our nation that was founded on Judeo-Christian values? Isaiah wrote, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.” This past weekend, I experienced a wake-up call. My wife, Ann, and I with our two youngest sons attended a conference on Creation at an evangelical church. The talk was interrupted repeatedly by a man and woman who appeared to be there solely to mock the presenter, and throughout the course of the event they would applaud references to atheists, as self-appointed referees against biblical truths. Earlier, this couple even deceived the speaker into having his picture taken with them so they could boast about their exploits on social media. They were cheerleaders for a culture attempting to deconstruct our national basis for Truth, the Bible. As believers, we have a choice—to remain apathetic to these attacks or to become active. I, for one, am choosing to step up my game. My heart has been quickened to do more, to fight for what is worth dying for and to take a clear stand. I ask you to join me. Put on your spiritual armor and together let’s stand for God’s truth. To become active, we must be wise as serpents and gentle as doves. This is a call to combine courage, humility and love, but we must all use our voices. But make no mistake; if you take on this challenge and speak up, you will be putting a target on your back. Prepare to be labeled intolerant, hater, fundamentalist, idiot, bigot, racist—the other side uses the powerful tool of embarrassment and humiliation to discourage and defeat you. Upholding a standard for Truth is an issue far more important than the outcome of a football game. If we lose the battle to preserve Truth as our common standard, we not only lose America, we lose everything. It is not time to wave the white flag of surrender. This is not a game; it’s a battle that demands our all, and we are on the winning team.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Meet the Blind Month 2012

Today kicks off the 2012 Meet the Blind Month. During this month public outreach is done to educate the sighted public about blindness, what it is and isn't, and generally increase acceptance about blindness. Several activities will be held this month in Denver, one of which I have posted below.

Please Join Us for an OPEN HOUSE as we celebrate National Meet the Blind Month! Thursday October 11th, 3pm to 6 pm at the Colorado Center for the Blind Please come and see how we spend the day learning and practicing blindness skills at the Colorado Center for the Blind • Learn about Braille and even how to write your name. Pick up Braille alphabet cards to share with friends, family, co-workers • See the latest technology that is used: Braille displays, screen readers, iPhones and much more • Step in to our woodshop where blind students will show you their projects and talk about how they use power tools • Learn why you always see us wearing sleep shades (black blindfolds) • Talk to our students about independent travel; find out how they cross complex intersections and much more • Meet our blind seniors and let them show you how they handle everything in their lives now that they are blind • Stop by the kitchen for some delicious light refreshments and discover how our blind students prepare all kinds of foods • See our plans for the future and learn about our upcoming capital campaign Our Open House will be filled with demonstrations and provide you with a whole new understanding on the abilities of blind people. The Center is located at 2233 W. Shepperd Ave. Littleton, 80120. For information or directions please call 303.778.1130 or visit www.cocenter.org

What To Do?

I think the below needs an answer. Any of my Liberal friends care to have a crack at it? What do you do when someone doesn't want to help out the little guy or the poor? How do you deal with those who disagree with you that government is the solution to all man's ills and it is our duty to contribute to the effort? How do you respond to the idea that if we should be able to have porn published freely we should also be able to discuss Jesus in the public square? Questions and thoughts that deserve a serious answer IMO.

"Liberals have never answered the question: what of those who do not choose to join in a 'common end' that government has chosen for them? What of those who refuse to 'belong to government'? These unfortunate souls must be dealt with, as Obama's departments and agencies are dealing with them: by silencing them, litigating against them, jailing them, and ruining their businesses and reputations. Those tactics, and more, were exactly what European leftists from Mussolini to Stalin resorted to. ... Obama's rationale for a second term is that he wants to govern, and that should be enough. Or as Jay Carney suggested, just shut up. ... George Washington called government 'a dangerous servant and a fearful master.' Thomas Paine called it 'a necessary evil.' For Obama, government is the thing we all belong to, the thing that 'made this country great.' Four more years of Obama will not make this country great, but it will ensure that we belong to government to an unimaginable extent. Obama's message is: 'You and everything you own belong to me.'" --columnist Jeffrey Folks