Columns/Opinions

Thu
17
Sep

"Bible applies to us to see God’s redemptive story throughout" by: Caleb Gibson

   Today, I will respond to a clip from Pastor Matt Chandler. 
   This is one of his well-known sermons when he said, “the Bible is not about you.”
His point is that many make the Bible about us when they teach the hero stories of the Bible. 
   He uses David as an example and says with intensity, “You’re not David!” 
   His heart and desire to point that help us to not infuse ourselves into the story. 
   While I disagree with what Chandler is saying on this topic, I want to emphasize that I enjoy his teachings. 
   I feel like many can learn from his style of preaching. He has a way of speaking that is natural, professional, and biblical. 
   I think this bring up a great discussion that is based on this fundamental question, what is the Bible about? 
   Fundamentally, I agree that the Bible is God’s redemptive story. That is the primary reason for the Scriptures. 

Thu
17
Sep

"Reel Reviews: ‘Face the Music’ caps off Bill & Ted’s story excellently" by: Jessica Shepard

   If you’re wanting to see a time travel movie that’s pretty wholesome and full of comedy, “Bill & Ted Face the Music” is definitely your jam.
   I actually went in to see this without much hope since comedy sequels struggle often at recreating the magic of the original.
   Or, in this case, the third film in a series has even lower expectations.
   However, I was happily surprised and loved almost every last moment of this film from cringe-worthy family problems to watching Bill and Ted grow older in the worst ways.
   Bill & Ted Face the Music is a science fiction comedy film directed by Dean Parisot and written by Chris Matheson and Ed Solomon.
   It is the third film in the Bill & Ted series, and the sequel to “Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey” (1991).

Thu
10
Sep

"Working it out on how to seek God’s help in our world" by: Mike Reddell

   Some weeks ago, I wrote a column about taking photographs at the Matagorda Jetties. 
   To refresh what happened, I was stepping on the uneven granite stones at the end of the pier and then I began to fall. 
   I wrote at the time that an invisible force stopped me – as in complete stop. 
   A close Bay City friend wrote that I should have made clear that it was the hand of God that stopped and saved me from doing some real harm to myself. 
   The Lord deserved my thanks, my recognition of his saving grace in a newspaper column. 
   Truly this is my public forum and it should have been used to explain what he had done. 
   Of all of the hundreds of subjects I’ve written about over the past four decades of column writing, I’d never written God’s gifts to me. 
   Like many of you reading this, I pray for the Lord to help us, to save us, to guide us from a year that ushered in so much pain and suffering on so many levels. 

Thu
10
Sep

"Online wedding reinforces that all you need is love" by: Jessica Shepard

   One of my best friends from college is getting married this Friday in her Florida backyard and I’ve been invited to attend the online ceremony. 
   Now, this is mostly due to COVID-19 still running rampant and isn’t really a new thing for everyone. 
   But, it is my first time participating in one, so, I’m hopeful that it works out in the end. 
   The ceremony is slated for Friday afternoon via Facebook Live and Zoom; so, I’ll have to pick which platform to use and am still deciding if I want to dress up a little or not at all. 
   It just feels a little more realistic if I’m not slumming it in my pajamas, right? 
   I mean, if anything, I can wear a nice top and regular shorts and do a little accessorizing from the waist up because that’s all they’ll really see of me anyway – if I do with the Zoom option. 
   Though, I’m more about embracing the comfort of staying at home and wearing pajamas instead and just watching from Facebook Live. 

Thu
10
Sep

Letter to the Editor: " Respect means doing the right thing – even if you don’t want to"

   There can only be one reason that the vast majority of us drive the posted speed limit or get our kids vaccinated before attending public school! 
   It is because, we dearly appreciate the fact that doing so protects ourselves, and those whom we love, from harm. 
   But, ultimately, these are accepted as standard practices, which become routinely adopted for the greater good of us all. 
   For if we fail to collectively act in a safe and responsible manner, we can, and often do, thoughtlessly risk the wellbeing of those around us. 
   Thus, such measures are seen as reasonable restrictions on our individual liberties.
Yet, many in American society will not wear a mask, unless it prohibits them from entry into a desired facility where wearing one is required. 

Thu
10
Sep

"Market corrections will happen, better get used to it" by: John Sample

   We finally had a selloff in the high-tech sector last week and it is continuing this week. 
   I almost gave up telling you that things were too far out of hand. You cannot sustain multiples that the FANG stocks were exhibiting.
I don’t see this as the end of the world for stocks. 
   Many will see this as an opportunity to buy at lower levels. I will wait and see. 
   We just had three days of pulling back in the NASDAQ index. That is a quick move down. Corrections usually take a month, but of course this is 2020.
I think you are given an opportunity to really look at where we are going. 
   I doubt that life as we knew it before March will come back anytime soon. 
   This means that you need to find companies that can prosper in this new world. 
   Apple seems to be a prime example. That does not mean that a multiple exceeding usual levels is justified. 

Thu
10
Sep

Grandparents: Consider these financial moves

   It’s almost National Grandparents Day. 
   If you have grandchildren, how can you help them on their journey through life? 
   Here’s one suggestion: Contribute to an education fund, possibly by investing in a 529 plan. 
   If you want to set up a platform for simply gifting money to your young grandchildren, you might want to consider a custodial account, known as a UGMA or UTMA. 
   But once your grandchildren reach the age of majority, they’ll gain full access to the money and can use it however they choose – and they might not choose college. 
   In any case, see your tax advisor before setting up a UGMA or UTMA. 
   For older grandchildren who might be saving for a new home or some other major goal, you could gift $15,000 per year, per recipient, without incurring gift taxes. 
   And don’t forget your estate plans – you may need to adjust your will or living trust to accommodate your wishes for your grandchildren. 

Thu
10
Sep

"We all have significant jobs and good works in God’s world" by: Betsy Monico

   “This is my story, this is my song” is one of my favorite lyrics from the hymn “Blessed Assurance.” 
   I have mentioned it before, probably once a year, since I started this journey of writing a column. 
   It takes me back to Caney Baptist with my Pappaw, and also the fact that I believe we all have a story, a song, a purpose. My story began in Fairfield, TX back in 1973. 
   More importantly though – it really started when I discovered that God had plans for me. 
   It would be more of a “hook” to say my assignment on earth was still some unknown mystery.  However, I vividly recall when I discovered why God put me here. I am a “kid” person. 
   Don’t get me wrong, I love adults. I visited with one girlfriend on the road last night for over an hour. The random, adult conversations that take place daily in my library keep me going. We laugh and cry on nearly a daily basis. 

Thu
10
Sep

"God desires all to be saved, come to knowledge of truth" by: Caleb Gibson

   There are moments when we read a Bible verse and not understand it. 
   One of these difficult verses is in Romans 9:13. It reads, “Just as it is written, ‘Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.’” 
   Remember this was written in around 557-525 B.C., thousands of years after Jacob and Esau were born. 
   Was God saying that before Esau was born, He disliked Esau? No God showed love to Esau in many ways. 
   As we read the Bible, we must remember that it was not written in English like we know. The translators do their best to communicate the words of the original authors.
It is important to ask some questions. 
   First, is this love and hate as we typically think of it? Or is this love and hate in another way? Jesus spoke in Luke 14:26 saying,  “If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.” 

Thu
10
Sep

"Reel Reviews: ‘Tenet’ requires all your attention, still has terrible ending" by: Jessica Shepard

 
   Last week I had to choose between two time travel movies – “Tenet” and “Bill & Ted Face the Music.” 
   I caved in to the hype for Tenet and saw it first thing Friday afternoon. 
   Now, the film does hold up to the hype with action scenes and uses that age-old “falling in love with a spy” trope; but, the dialogue is hard to hear in many instances and the music drowns out a lot. 
   The only other upside is that right from the moment the movie starts, you’ve got an action sequence made to – hopefully - hold your attention. 
   Tenet is a spy film written and directed by Christopher Nolan, who produced it with Emma Thomas. 
   As a co-production between the United Kingdom and United States, it stars John David Washington, Robert Pattinson, Elizabeth Debicki, Dimple Kapadia, Michael Caine, Clémence Poésy, and Kenneth Branagh. 

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