My Musings

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Only Six Days Remaining!

Friends and Fellow Bloggers,

There are now only six days left until I leave for Basic Combat Training. I am very excited. I have been taking and completing several military coresspondence courses via the internet over the course of thse past few days. As a result of some of the work that I have done and the score I received on my PT (Physical Training) test, I have recieved my first promotion prior to even shipping for Basic. I am now an E-2 which is a PV2 or Private Second Class. This means that I will get an extra $254 per month for having completed that work.

Neither my wife nor myself have to work between now and next week. We are taking the time to go on some extra dates and spend some extra time together before I leave. On Saturday night we went to T.G.I. Fridays and yesterday we went to Golden Corral. We are going out to Applebees this Friday night and one of my friends will be taking us out to the Longhorn Steakhouse on Saturday night. Also, another friend gave us a gift certificate to stay one night at the Four Points Sheritan, a five-star hotel. We are extremely excited about that!

Most of our friends have been extremely supportive and are going far beyond what we would have imagined to encourage us and support us. There is a small group of people in our church who have been very unsupportive almost to the degree of being hurtful. I mean to tell you some people here have said some extremely disheartening things.

To each his own!

Well, may I express a great big thank you to all of those who have been supportive and prayful for my situation. Thank you!

In Christ,

Nicholas Z. Cardot

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Monday, January 29, 2007

Two Sides of the Same Coin!

I recently heard of two stories that have made me completely sick to my stomach. How can our nation, which was founded on the principles of God’s Word, be treating those who stand for God with such blatant disrespect?

The first story that I am posting here recounts the story of a chaplain who desired nothing more that to be able to pray as his conscience dictated. He simply wanted to be able to pray “in Jesus’ name.” Because of his stand for Christ, he lost his job, his career, his retirement…everything! America just turned their back on our founding principles again!

How much more of this is God going to smile upon before he begins to get just a little bit upset? I know that I want to punch someone for doing this to this godly man. I want to shout and scream…I really do wonder how God, the one who is actually being attacked here, feels about all this. Sad…angry…hmmmm…

“A U.S. Navy chaplain who prayed ‘in Jesus' name’ as his conscience dictated is being ejected from the military service ‘in retaliation’ for his victorious battle to change Navy policy that required religious rites be ‘non-sectarian.’

‘This fight cost me everything. My career is over, my family is now homeless, we've lost a million dollar pension, but Congress agreed with me and rescinded the Navy policy, so chaplains are free again to pray in Jesus' name,’ Chaplain Gordon Klingenschmitt told WND. ‘My sacrifice purchased their freedom. My conscience is clear, the fight was worth it, and I'd do it all again.’”

Source: World Net Daily: Navy Dismisses Chaplain

This second story is about a muslim man who was promoted for his sacrifice in catering to al-Qaida detainees at prison camps. So America decides to turn her back on men who stand for the true and living God, and instead she decides to go out of her way to elevate and reward those who promote false gods! She decides to reward those who favor and care for our enemies. I just want to throw something or hit someone!

Notice in the following story how that an officer of an unusually high rank stepped down to reward this man.

“In a special ceremony, the Pentagon recently promoted a Wahhabi-trained muslim chaplain who catered to al-Qaida detainees at Guantanamo and fought to establish the first mosque in Marine Corps history.
Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England personally promoted Navy chaplain Abuhena Mohammed Saifulislam from lieutenant to lieutenant commander. Saifulislam also received a Joint Service Commendation Medal at the Pentagon ceremony held on the fifth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.

Pentagon officials say the ceremony was unprecedented.

‘It's unusual for a deputy secretary to personally promote an officer of that rank," said one official who wished to go unnamed. "No one has known of such a high-level dignitary doing that.’”

Source: World Net Daily: Quantico Mosque Leader Promoted

P.S. The word muslum is purposely not capitalized in this post. If that offends you, I'm going to have to kindly ask you to get over it!


Sunday, January 28, 2007

The Watchman Awards #8 - The Best Of 2007

Welcome back friends and bloggers. I do apologize that my Watchman Awards are a day late this week. I try to have them posted each Saturday, but here it is Sunday. I’m sorry.

I have spent the week exercising in an attempt to get ready for Basic Training. I leave on Feb. 6…only nine days away! Yesterday I ran eleven miles without stopping. It took me almost two hours, but I did it without stopping. I have been working back up to this kind of endurance running for the past month now and am finally beginning to get back into the shape I was in in High School. I ran six miles every morning before school during my senior year. I am a little sore but not nearly as much as I thought that I would be. I actually feel really good.

Some of my friends give me a hard time because I am so skinny. They wonder what kind of strength someone as thin as I am can have. Well, I’m not entirely sure, but I do know that I can push myself as far as anyone else can…if not farther. I am beginning to feel like I am in great shape again. I am actually looking forward to Basic Training. I have always been a glutton for punishment.

Anyways, here are this week’s awards. These three were easy winners. They are excellent articles and stories and I promise that you will be blessed if you take the time to read them. Have fun and God bless you all.

Oh…and don’t forget to write to me when I am in Basic Training. I will post the address on this blog when I get it. One friend of mine said that he was going to send me a letter covered with lipstick kisses and write "From Bob" on the envelope. Now that's just disgusting and none of you are allowed to do that!

1st. Says Simpleton: Evangelism On George Street - "I was a rating on an Australian warship. I was living a reprobate life. In a crisis I really hit the wall. One of my colleagues, to whom I gave literal hell, was there to help me. He led me to Jesus and the change in my life was night to day in 24 hours. I was so grateful to God; I promised God that I would share Jesus in a simple witness with at least 10 people a day. As God me strength I did that. Sometimes I was ill and couldn't do it, but I made up for the days I missed it at other times. I wasn't paranoid about it. I have done this for over 40 years. In my retirement years, the best place was on St. George Street where I saw hundreds of people a day. I got lots of rejections, but a lot of people courteously took the tract. In 40 years of doing this, I have never heard of one single person coming to Jesus until today."

2nd. Jackhammer: How Do You Know That? – “Somebody might be saying, “How do you know that? What about what you don’t know?” Well, that’s a fair enough question. How can anybody be so sure that they know anything? No one is omniscient. True and False. I’m not omniscient. If I didn’t have help, I would be totally ignorant. But I have a Friend Who is omniscient. He knows everything, and whatever I learn from Him, I can be sure it is true and right altogether. The Christian who trusts the Word of God has an anchor that keeps the soul steady on the restless sea of life. Knowing God. Fearing God. Obeying God. These are all foundational to knowing anything. The source of all knowledge is God, and the only way for ignorant man to be sure of any knowledge is for that man to fear, obey, know, and depend on God and His Word.”

3rd. The Good Report: Dying Testimony of an Atheist - “A minister, while traveling one day, was overtaken by a thunderstorm and took refuge in what was called a tavern. His attention was soon directed towards a man who seemed to be trying to entertain himself and others by using profanity in its lowest degree. He claimed to be an atheist, and blasphemed the name of God with unusual recklessness. Finally, while the storm was raging wildly, he said to those around him, ‘There is no God, and to prove to you that I am right about it, I will go out there on that little hill and dare Him to strike me with His lightning.’”


A Song For Sunday #3 - I'm A Child of the King

Once I was clothed in the rags of my sin,
Wretched and poor, lost and lonely within.
But with wondrous compassion, the King of all kings,
In pity and love, took me under His wings.

Oh, yes, oh yes, I'm a child of the King
His royal blood now flows in my veins.
And I who was wretched and poor now can sing
Praise God, praise God, I'm a child of the King.

Now I'm a child with a Heavenly home,
My Holy Father has made me His own.
And I'm cleansed by His blood, and I'm clothed in His love,
And some day I'll sing with the angels above.


Friday, January 26, 2007

The Friday Funnies #2: Advice to our Wives

Note: these all are numbered "1" on purpose:

1. Learn to put up with the toilet seat. You're a big girl. If it's up, put it down. We need it up, you need it down. You don't hear us complaining about you leaving it down!

1. Sunday = Sports. It's like the full moon or the changing of the tides. Let it be.

1. Shopping is NOT a sport. And no, we are never going to think of it that way.

1. Crying is blackmail.

1. Ask for what you want. Let us be clear on this one: Subtle hints do not work! Strong hints do not work! Just say it!

1. Yes or No are perfectly acceptable answers to almost every question.

1. Come to us with a problem only if you want help solving it. That's what we do. Sympathy is what your girlfriends are for.

1. A headache that lasts for 17 months is a problem. See a doctor.

1. Anything we said 6 months ago is inadmissible in an argument. In fact, all comments become null and void after 7 days.

1. If something we said can be interpreted two ways, and one of the ways makes you sad or angry, we meant the other one.

to be continued...


Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The State of the Union Address 2007

Here are some excerpts from the President’s State of the Union Address. I was deeply moved by the story at the end regarding the young man from Independence, KY. I happen to live in Lexington, KY and am very proud to see a young man from this state serving proudly in the ranks of the United States Military with such valor and heroism. I can hardly wait to serve my country in the United States Military.

“For all of us in this room, there is no higher responsibility than to protect the people of this country from danger. Five years have come and gone since we saw the scenes and felt the sorrow that the terrorists can cause. We've had time to take stock of our situation. We've added many critical protections to guard the homeland. We know with certainty that the horrors of that September morning were just a glimpse of what the terrorists intend for us -- unless we stop them.

“With the distance of time, we find ourselves debating the causes of conflict and the course we have followed. Such debates are essential when a great democracy faces great questions. Yet one question has surely been settled: that to win the war on terror we must take the fight to the enemy.

“From the start, America and our allies have protected our people by staying on the offense. The enemy knows that the days of comfortable sanctuary, easy movement, steady financing, and free flowing communications are long over. For the terrorists, life since 9/11 has never been the same.

“Our success in this war is often measured by the things that did not happen. We cannot know the full extent of the attacks that we and our allies have prevented, but here is some of what we do know: We stopped an al Qaeda plot to fly a hijacked airplane into the tallest building on the West Coast. We broke up a Southeast Asian terror cell grooming operatives for attacks inside the United States. We uncovered an al Qaeda cell developing anthrax to be used in attacks against America. And just last August, British authorities uncovered a plot to blow up passenger planes bound for America over the Atlantic Ocean. For each life saved, we owe a debt of gratitude to the brave public servants who devote their lives to finding the terrorists and stopping them.

“Every success against the terrorists is a reminder of the shoreless ambitions of this enemy. The evil that inspired and rejoiced in 9/11 is still at work in the world. And so long as that's the case, America is still a nation at war.

“In the mind of the terrorist, this war began well before September the 11th, and will not end until their radical vision is fulfilled. And these past five years have given us a much clearer view of the nature of this enemy. Al Qaeda and its followers are Sunni extremists, possessed by hatred and commanded by a harsh and narrow ideology. Take almost any principle of civilization, and their goal is the opposite. They preach with threats, instruct with bullets and bombs, and promise paradise for the murder of the innocent.

“Our enemies are quite explicit about their intentions. They want to overthrow moderate governments, and establish safe havens from which to plan and carry out new attacks on our country. By killing and terrorizing Americans, they want to force our country to retreat from the world and abandon the cause of liberty. They would then be free to impose their will and spread their totalitarian ideology. Listen to this warning from the late terrorist Zarqawi: "We will sacrifice our blood and bodies to put an end to your dreams, and what is coming is even worse." Osama bin Laden declared: "Death is better than living on this Earth with the unbelievers among us…"

“The Shia and Sunni extremists are different faces of the same totalitarian threat. Whatever slogans they chant, when they slaughter the innocent they have the same wicked purposes. They want to kill Americans, kill democracy in the Middle East, and gain the weapons to kill on an even more horrific scale.

“In the sixth year since our nation was attacked, I wish I could report to you that the dangers had ended. They have not. And so it remains the policy of this government to use every lawful and proper tool of intelligence, diplomacy, law enforcement, and military action to do our duty, to find these enemies, and to protect the American people…

“This is where matters stand tonight, in the here and now. I have spoken with many of you in person. I respect you and the arguments you've made. We went into this largely united, in our assumptions and in our convictions. And whatever you voted for, you did not vote for failure. Our country is pursuing a new strategy in Iraq, and I ask you to give it a chance to work. And I ask you to support our troops in the field, and those on their way…

“Tommy Rieman was a teenager pumping gas in Independence, Kentucky, when he enlisted in the United States Army. In December 2003, he was on a reconnaissance mission in Iraq when his team came under heavy enemy fire. From his Humvee, Sergeant Rieman returned fire; he used his body as a shield to protect his gunner. He was shot in the chest and arm, and received shrapnel wounds to his legs -- yet he refused medical attention, and stayed in the fight. He helped to repel a second attack, firing grenades at the enemy's position. For his exceptional courage, Sergeant Rieman was awarded the Silver Star. And like so many other Americans who have volunteered to defend us, he has earned the respect and the gratitude of our entire country.

“In such courage and compassion, ladies and gentlemen, we see the spirit and character of America -- and these qualities are not in short supply. This is a decent and honorable country -- and resilient, too. We've been through a lot together. We've met challenges and faced dangers, and we know that more lie ahead. Yet we can go forward with confidence -- because the State of our Union is strong, our cause in the world is right, and tonight that cause goes on. God bless.

“See you next year. Thank you for your prayers.”

Calling All Veterans!

I recently joined the United States Army and I leave for Basic Training on February 6, 2007...two weeks from today. I have in my contract the Airborne Ranger contract and will therefore me headed for Ft. Benning, Georgia for what is called "One Station Unit Training." At Ft. Benning, I will recieve my Basic Training, my Advanced Individual Training, my Airborne School, my Ranger Indoctrination Program, and eventually my Ranger School. I will be at Ft. Benning for a while.

Since I joined, I have enjoyed the advice and memories of many men who have served in the United States military. If you have ever served in the military, I would love for you to share with us the dates of your service time, any memories that you might like to share, and some of the advice that you might offer to a young man getting ready to go in. If you have not personally served in the military, but one of your friends or loved ones has, please tell me about when they served, in which branch of the military, and what they did.

I know that the lifestyle will be quite different from anything that I have been used to in the civilian world and I am therefore trying to prepare myself as much as is possible both physically and mentally. Physically, I am running about five miles a day, doing sets of sit-ups every day, and doing sets of pushups on the hour every other day. Mentally, I am reading as many books about the military as I can and trying to get as much information and advice from men who have already gone before me in this venture. If you can offer any help in this regard, please do. Thank you in advance.


Monday, January 22, 2007

An Anti-American Email To Make Your Blood Boil!

Below is an email exchange between a soldier stationed in Iraq and a company that sells different types of mats. He was inquiring as to whether or not the company ships overseas. He wanted to get the troops better gear to sleep on. This is the company’s response. I am floored. Please repost this so that this company will hear us loud and clear that we do not stand for this. Whatever your view is on this war - these troops are just following orders. Most are passionate about what they are doing. You can disagree with the war without disrespecting our troops. I apologize, but I cannot with a clear conscience post the way that this makes me feel that someone would say things like this. It just makes my blood boil!

From: SGT Jason Hess
Sent: Tue Jan 16 3:25

Do you ship to APO addresses? I'm in the 1st Cavalry Division stationed in Iraq and we are trying to order some mats but we are looking for who ships to APO first.

Sent: Tuesday, January 16, 2007 9:44 PM
Subject: Re: Feedback: from

SGT Hess,
We do not ship to APO addresses, and even if we did, we would NEVER ship to Iraq. If you were sensible, you and your troops would pull out of Iraq.

Bargain Suppliers

The Professional Christian Blogger #2: Blog Content Ideas

Here are a list of the top ten sources that I use for gathering and creating blog ideas. If you put these ideas into practice you will probably not lack for creative blog topics and ideas. Good luck and happy blogging!

  • Personal Bible Reading – As a Christian, this should be a daily source of insight and wisdom. Those insights can become excellent sources of encouragement and challenge to those who may read your blog.

  • Books, Newspapers, and Magazines - I’m increasingly finding inspiration in offline sources of information.

  • Church – It’s amazing how many ideas come from the sermons that I have heard. Be sure to use a notebook and jot ideas that you can share with other Christians via your blog.

  • Hymns and Songs – Songs and Hymns are filled with awesome Christian truths that can be excellent topics for blog articles.

  • The Blogosphere - I find the writing of others often stimulates posts that build on, extend or bounce off their ideas. Don’t forget to dig around in other people’s archives also as it isn’t only current posts that are places where you’ll get ideas. Of course always give credit to the source of your ideas.

  • Conversations - It’s amazing how many ideas come from the chats I have with other bloggers, readers, friends and family both in real life and via IM or email.

  • Mad Ideas - Ever been laying in bed at night and get a crazy idea! I don’t just chuckle to myself when they come - I get up and write them down. It’s amazing how many of them end up being key posts for me later.

  • Experience - A fairly large proportion of my post ideas come directly out of an experience that I’m having on the topic. Problems, achievements, challenges and mistakes are often the best source of useful posts as you’ll find readers relate well to them.

  • Archives - Dig around in your own blog’s archives and you’ll be amazed at the opportunities that you’ll find. Look for half finished ideas, opportunities to update your ideas or even topics that your newer readers wouldn’t have seen before.

  • Brainstorming - I take time out each week to specifically come up with ideas to post about. While most of my posts ‘just come to me’ through my day to day rhythm - I’m a big believer in working hard on story ideas also and have a folder permanently on my desktop filled with text documents that have little else in them except for a topic idea and perhaps a few jotted down notes - all to work on later.


Sunday, January 21, 2007

A Song For Sunday #2 - He Touched Me

Shackled by a heavy burden,
'Neath a load of guilt and shame;
Then the hand of Jesus touched me,
And now I am no longer the same.

He touched me, Oh, He touched me,
And oh, the joy that floods my soul;
Something happened, and now I know,
He touched me and made me whole.

Since I met this blessed Saviour,
Since He cleansed and made me whole;
I will never cease to praise Him,
I'll shout it while eternity rolls.


Saturday, January 20, 2007

The Watchman Awards #7 - The Best of 2007

This week's first place article is written by a college student named Jamie Kiley and is entitled "Don't Give Us The Vote." I have never found or read any article speaking of the anti-suffrage movement in the early 1900's until this one and was absolutely amazed that someone would tackle the subject. Although I figured they existed, I never knew about any female organizations that opposed suffrage. It was an eye opener and I highly recemmend the article!

In last week's post, I told you all that I had an announcement coming up in the near future. I then made that announcement in Monday's post entitled The Greatly Anticipated Announcement. I let you all know on that day that I would be leaving for Basic Training for the United States Army in early February. The responses to that post were so overwhelming. Everyone has been so eager to lend their support, prayers, and advice. The response has been much more positive than I could have ever expected. Thank you!

Please continue to be in prayer for my wife and I as we prepare for military life. I am working out almost everyday. I used to run and bicycle a lot in High School and was in awesome physical shape at that time. I have been working very hard to get back into shape in preparation for the military. I am up to running between five and six miles per day without being sore. I am also working aggressively on increasing my ability to do push-ups and sit-ups. I am open to any recommendations for increasing the effectiveness of my work-outs. Again, thank you to everyone!

While I am in Basic Training, I will not personally be able to update my blog. That, I think, is obvious. My blog will, however, get updated. My wife has agreed to post the letters that I send to her. I hope to send her at least one or two letters per week. Minus anything of a personal nature, my wife will post the letters verbatim so that all of our friends and family will be able to keep up with my training.

I will, however, be unable to maintain my Watchman Awards though I would like to. I have decided to offer an open ended invitation to anyone who might be willing to post a list of three great blog articles on my blog for me once per week. You would be welcome to write some information before the list as I often do, but you certainly wouldn't have to. If anyone would be interested in doing this please let me know and I will add you to the list of people who are allowed to post on this blog. If you are interested, either leave my a comment below or send me a personal message via my email which can be found on my profile at the side. Thank you all and God bless you!

And now for our feature presentation...The Watchman Awards!

1st. Jamie Kiley: Don't Give Us The Vote - "'What?' you say. 'There were women who actively fought against suffrage for themselves?!' Yep. And the movement wasn’t an insignificant one, either. In fact, the Antis, as they were known, enjoyed a high rate of success up until 1917, when suffragists starting pushing for a federal amendment to the Constitution instead of working on a state-by-state basis."

2nd. Missionary Insights: How Is Your Vision Of God? - "Today, many see God wearing a Hawaiian shirt and wearing flip flops. As one popular preacher described him in a book, "They see the 'man upstairs,' or their 'buddy.'" How we view God is very important because it is directly tied to how we serve God. Yes that’s right...your view of God does determine how you will serve God. The devil has done a good job at painting a distorted picture of God, and it has affected Christianity today."

3rd. Maranatha: Love and Reverence - "Marriage does not bring with it a 'bed of roses.' This cliche has been used so much but have we ever thought about its meaning? Roses need to be planted in just the right soil, have just the right amount of watering and sunshine, and continually need pruning if they are to grow healthy. One can see the difference between neglected roses and a rose bush which has been meticulously cared for. A good marriage takes years of nurturing by both husband and wife. Starting marriage off equally yoked with a desire to serve the Lord together is a wonderful start. But the key to a good and successful marriage begins with Eph. 5:33...Love and Reverence."

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Friday, January 19, 2007

Abandoned Vehicles

Oh…what a day!

My wife and I left this morning from our home in Lexington, KY to drive north toward my hometown of Amboy, IL. We visiting my parents for a few days for the last time before I leave for Basic Training in a couple of weeks.

We loaded up the car with our luggage and then set ourselves up for the long drive of two vehicles five hundred miles north into Illinois. I was in my truck and my wife was following me in our car as we made our pilgrimage home. We filled up both gas tanks and then hopped on the interstate and began to drive north. Everything was fine…for about the first thirty minutes…

About a week ago, I called ahead, told them that we were planning to come up for the weekend, and asked if we could stay with them while we were there. They were only too happy to hear that we would be coming home for a few days and were glad to put us up for our time in Illinois.

I then called my brother to see if he would like to buy my truck. It is a gray 1990 Ford Ranger. I have owned for almost a year and it has basically been my little, beat-up work truck. I told him that I would let him have it for five hundred dollars. I just put new tires on it and it has a really nice diamond-plate steel tool box on it. It runs…err…ran great. He had seen it before and said that he would be glad to take it for that price.

I offered to drive the truck back to Illinois since I was coming that way anyways. He was obviously quite happy to hear that offer and I could tell in his voice that he was looking forward to owning a nice little work truck. And so we find ourselves at the beginning of our story.

My wife and I left this morning to drive to Illinois. Everything was fine…for about the first thirty minutes.

I suddenly felt a jerk and my truck immediately felt as though it had no driving power. Instantly it returned to normal. My eyebrows raised just a bit in curiosity as I began to try to figure out what it was. It honestly felt like something heavy had slid across the bed and shook the truck just a tiny bit. I don’t have anything heavy in the back…do I? I looked at the dashboard. 70mph. Temperature was good. No engine lights.

Suddenly it happened again. Oh no! I gave it more gas hoping to give it the power that it needed to overcome whatever it was it was struggling with. I’m no had a hairball for all I knew. I could hear the engine revving while at the same time I could feel the truck slowing down. Oh no!

Oh no! I have no fifth gear. Quick. I’ll shift it into fourth. And so I did. Oh no! I have no fourth gear…no third gear….I don’t have any gears!!! Aaaaahhhhhhh! I began to panic…but only for a split second.

I’ll say that I then shifted it into neutral and then pulled it off to the side of the road, but in all reality it already was in neutral. I made some phone calls to some friends who are mechanics and eventually came to the conclusion that this was not going to be a very cheap fix. In fact, whatever I did to fix it was going to cause a lot of hassle and a bunch of money that I don’t have. I called my brother and we decided that it probably wasn’t in either one of our best interests for me to continue trying to get this vehicle up to him.

Hmmmm. I’m planning on getting rid of it anyways. Hmmmmmm.

I weighed several options and finally made a decision. I walked back to the car to talk to my wife. Honey, could you help me unload the truck while I remove the license plate.

I called a couple of friends who are mechanically inclined, told them the situation, and told them that if they wanted a free truck that they could have it.

If any of you want it, it is located on I-75 just north of Lexington about 25 miles. The keys are located just inside the bracket that holds the rear bumper on located directly below the Ford emblem on the tailgate. If you decide to take it, let me know and I will sign the title and mail it to you. If no one takes it…well then Mr. Impound can have it and auction it off.

F-O-R-D --- Found On Road Dead

P.S. I made it through the entire situation without swearing, fretting, or even getting upset about it in the slightest. Honest. I have a really good God and I’m not really too worried about an old beat-up pick-up truck!

Besides, I believe that sometimes when God takes something away from us it is a test to reveal how much we love Him and then he will often reward us with something greater. Remember all of the stuff that Job got after the trials. I’m sort of hoping that God may have something positive in store for me if I just keep on trusting Him. Even if he doesn’t, I’m not too worried about…He’s been pretty good to me!!!


The Friday Funnies #1: Vocabulary Spin


For those who love the philosophy of hypocrisy and ambiguity….

Atheism is a non-prophet organization.

I went to a bookstore and asked the saleswoman, “Where’s the
self-help section?” She said if she told me, it would defeat the

What if there were no hypothetical questions?

Is there another word for synonym?

What do you do when you see an endangered animal eating an
endangered plant?

Can vegetarians eat animal crackers?

Why do they put Braille on the drive-through bank machines?

What was the best thing before sliced bread?

One nice thing about egotists: they don’t talk about other people.

Whose cruel idea was it for the word “Lisp” to have “S” in it?

If you spin an oriental man in a circle three times, does he
become disoriented?


Thursday, January 18, 2007

Generous Oil Companies and the Price of Gasoline?

When oil prices shot up after Hurricane Katrina, Congress summoned oil executives to Capitol Hill to give them a very public dressing down. The assumption seemed to be that oil companies could make prices rise at will. Now that oil prices are falling rapidly, will Congress invite those executives back to thank them? After all, if oil executives can control prices, then they’re being very generous right now.

Or could it be that oil prices result from supply and demand, and the post-Katrina hearings were a publicity stunt?

The Professional Christian Blogger #1: Content

On Saturday's Watchman Awards, I mentioned the fact that I was considering starting a series on blogging tips and ideas. I recieved some positive feedback in that direction and have therefore decided to pursue this direction with a few of my blog posts. I hope that some of these ideas will be a help and a blessing to you!

After some time in the blogging universe, I sat down and began to look back at the uphill struggle to create, market, and maintain a successful blogging venture. I began to realize how many different tips and ideas have influenced the very small level of success that I have been able to enjoy.

It seems that almost everyday my blog traffic moves just a little bit higher and I am thankful for that. In fact, that is my goal. As a Christian blogger, it is my prayer and goal to influence, challenge, and be a blessing to as many people as possible. Although I blog because I simply enjoy putting my thoughts into words that is not the only reason that I blog. I blog to influence people for the cause of Christ.

If I hope to influence 50 people with a particular post, then I probably need to find a way to get 100 people to read that article. If I want 100 people to read a particular article, then I need to employ some principles and ideas that actually work to get people to read it. Standing on the street corner and shouting the web address of my blog, though quite passionate, is not always the most effective means of attracting and growing a successful blog.

The first principle to successful blogging, and perhaps the most important is content. The actual content of a blog is perhaps more important than any other single element of a person’s blog. Here are a few things to think about when considering your blog’s content.

  • Quality Content – People want quality content. Whenever you post something to your blog you need to ask yourself the following question, “Did I do my best on this article or could I have done better?” If you find yourself answering that you could have done better, your readers already know and they have probably already thought it themselves. There are many blogs that I have visited that simply look spectacular but the content is dreadful. The design may be miles above par but if the quality of your content lacks in any way, people don’t want to read it.

  • Consistent Content – People want consistent content. People like things that are changing. In a very real sense, people want to be entertained. They want to find something new at your site or blog every time that they swing by it. Now we obviously can’t having something new posted every five minutes, but there is something that we can do in this area. We can be consistent. Set up a schedule that you are going to follow with your blog and then stick to it. Maybe you will decide to post something every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Even though you are only posting three posts per week, people will begin to expect it on the same days and they will stop by on a regular basis. Posting sporadically with some long and some short intervals between posts reduces visitors drastically. Be consistent.

  • Targeted Content – People want targeted content. At the header of most blogspot blogs there is a link called “Next Blog.” This link takes you to any one of the millions of blogs hosted at blogspot. This link is not very popular among most people because people don’t usually want to randomly browse through blogs enjoying any topic that happens to show up on the screen. People like to browse through a series of blogs on a specific subject. They may want to browse through just sports blogs, or just news blogs, or just Christian blogs, but not often do people want to browse a bunch of random blogs. Keep this in mind when you post articles on your blog. If you are trying to cover fifty-five and a half different topics with your blog, you are probably going to lose a lot of readers. Focus in on a particular genre of blogging and become an expert in that area. Readers will begin to flock to your blog to see what you have to say on a specifically targeted topic.

Start your blog resolutions this year by keeping these three things in mind about the subject of blog content. Take these three things to heart and put them into practice before we stop to look at the next principles of blogging. You need to get your house in order before you can reasonably expect others to look at it with any level of respect.

Good luck and happy blogging!


Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Patriotism: Nothing More Than A Fad?

Have you ever listened to someone who is lazy talk about hard work? Have you ever listened to someone who is foolish try to give someone else advice? Have you ever heard someone who has done very little for their country speak patriotically? If you are like have.

When I was in High School, I loved all things patriotic. My bedroom was decorated in red, white, and blue. I had posters depicting the classic "Uncle Sam Wants You!" portrait. I had patriotic poems published in the newspaper. I read books upon books about American history. I was fascinated and consumed with everything American. I was very patriotic. I was also very naive and very idealist.

As I looked around me, I began to see that everyone had some sense of patriotism towards America...and that of course is good...sort of. The only problem I had with this seemingly great thing was that many people were doing absolutely nothing to support America with anything other than words. They were toting the cute red, white, and blue bumper sticker or the patriotic novelty tee-shirt, but with their actions they did nothing patriotic. They griped about taxes, about the government, and about everything else American. They contributed in a very negative way to society in many ways. They boasted only disrespect to the law and to right. None of these negative things in their lives mattered, however. They had the bumper sticker with the flag on it, therefore they were patriotic. So were they patriotic? Or were they just participating in a popular post-Sept. 11 fad? I began to think that many were simply doing the latter of the two.

I stopped writing the poetry. I stopped being so outspoken about my love for the military and for the country. After all, what had I done to contribute positively for America? What really had I done? Don't get me wrong. I did not become unpatriotic. In fact, just the opposite has happened. My love for America has only grown since then in ways that I simply cannot describe. I simply developed a contempt for those that would feign patriotism for some sort of pseudo-patriotic status and I did not want to be counted among their ranks.

"Too many people have given to much for America for the flag to be used as a fad." A former soldier made a remark similar to this one which triggered my new-found contempt for what I have now dubbed as "pseudo-patriotism." The man who made that remark to me now has a purple heart, the medal of commendation that you don't want to receive! He fought and paid the price for us. He is a patriot in every sense of term. He is in my mind a great hero. He is also my brother.

When he made the statement to me, he said it in passing. He probably doesn't even remember saying it to me. I have thought about that sentiment ever since that day, however, and decided that I want to be known as someone who did something for my country and not as someone who said something about my country.

I am not saying that everyone who claims to be patriotic needs to run off and join the military. That is the farthest thing from what I am saying. But friends, I don't need to tell you what you can do to help America. You know as well as I do that you can be doing things right now to show your love for this country. There are tons of things that you can do in your church or in your community to demonstrate patriotism in a way that goes beyond the fadish uses of flowery words and interesting bumper stickers. Friends, don't be a pseudo-patriotic American. I don't mean to be rude, but if you make me sick!


Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Words of Encouragement from a Fellow Soldier

Hello everybody and thank you all for your support of my husband in this new venture. If you haven't already guessed, I am Nick's wonderful, fantastic wife.

I recently told one of my friends who has been in the Military for 13 years that my husband joined the Army. This is the email that he sent in response to the exciting news.


Great to hear from you. That's good news about Nick. As long as it's the will of God, You and Nick will be fine. Yes, separation is tough but you can do it. Just remember that it's only temporary. What does he want to be? If he is going to Ft. Benning for training I can guess he is in the infantry.

This will be a major change for you and there will be things you will have to get used to. After his training is complete, you will move to a base somewhere. My advice is to live off post if it is possible. Katy and I just liked being in our own place away from know what I mean. It's great having a regular pay check and full medical benefits. This will come in handy when it's time for the baby. :)

I just want you to know I support you and Nick all the way. Katy and I will always be here to talk to and help you. You will make a great Army Wife! You can do it!

It is not only the husband that serves our country but his wife also. Keeping things going great on the home front and keeping the marriage fire hot is your part in this. It is critical for him to know that everything is good with you and the home. He will have enough to worry about especially during this time of training. Believe me Diane, I know its tough being away from the one you love, but it's for the service of our great country and to ensure all of our freedoms. The Lord has been good to Katy and I over these last 13 years we have served together. I can't imagine life without Katy. She is everything to me. Her support and unending love and care for me has gotten me through all these years.

Thank you both for your service to our country and God bless you.



Monday, January 15, 2007

The Greatly Anticipated Announcement

Dear Friends and Fellow Bloggers,

After much prayer and careful consideration, my wife and I have decided to make a rather life-changing decision. As you may have now just guessed, I am about to make the exciting announcement that I mentioned in this past week’s episode of the Watchman Awards. Brace yourselves…

I have joined the United States Army and will be leaving for Basic Training on Tuesday, February 6, 2007. I certainly hope that you will all be praying for my wife and I as we enter this phase in our lives. Although she supports me whole-heartedly, I know that this will be very hard on my wife for some time while we are apart and I would greatly appreciate your prayers for her.

Blogging will probably slow down a bit during this time. I will try to send some periodic updates when I can get a chance. I will be sending some notes to my wife which she will post to the web. Don’t expect very much in this regard. I will also be sure to post the address where I can be mailed during my stay at Basic Training in hopes that some of you would be so kind as to mail me with some words of encouragement while I am there. I am told that soldiers look forward to mail call during Basic with great anticipation. If I have in some way been a blessing to you with this blog or with any comments I may have made on your blog, please drop me a note while I am in Basic Training and let me know.

Friends, I am so excited and except for the fact that I will be separated for a few months from the most wonderful lady in the entire world, I can hardly wait. I have wanted to serve in the military since I was in High School and now I am actually going to do it.

I believe beyond any shadow of doubt that this is the will of God for my wife and I at this time and I am so excited to be pursuing this. Please pray!

I will be posting some more information in the near future about some of the specific areas that I will be pursuing in the Army in some future blog posts. I will be posting some of the beliefs that I have about the United States Army. I will also do my best to answer any questions that you would like to ask me relating to this new venture.

Your Brother In Christ,
Nicholas Z. Cardot

P.S. Let me know what you think of the new header graphic that I have added!


The Ministry of the Holy Spirit in the Life of the Believer (Part 2)

All throughout the New Testament, the Bible speaks of being filled with the Holy Spirit. Yes, every believer is indwelt with the Holy Spirit, but the Bible refers to another more precise experience in one’s life. The Bible speaks of a time when men are definitely brought to a place where they are filled with the Holy Spirit in such a way that they are currently manifesting the graces of the Spirit in his life. Their lives are brought to a place of complete surrender to God and they are filled to overflowing with the power of the Spirit to do such things as win souls to Christ and preach the Word of God in power and authority. When the Spirit of the Lord begins to use a person whose heart is entirely yielded to God, things begin to happen that no person can explain away, except to say that God is in that man or woman’s life.

The Spirit of the Lord is referred to in the Old Testament in the life of Samson. There were times that the Spirit of the Lord came upon Samson and he was able to do feats that were unreal in the eyes of men. God gave him strength and power to do a work for him in ways that we cannot explain. I do not know if Samson was a big man or if he was a small man. But when the Bible says that he was able to pick up the gates of the city, something miraculous is taking place in that life. He was able to catch foxes with his bear hands. He was able to kill hundreds of men with the jawbone of an ass. Why? It happened because the Spirit of the Lord came upon him.

Other men throughout the Old Testament experienced times when the Spirit of the Lord came upon them and they too were able to accomplish great things for God. There are many instances when the Spirit of God would descend upon a life and cause them to preach and to prophecy with great power. Revivals were ushered in under the hand of the Spirit of God. The Spirit of God was present and active in the Old Testament just as He is today.

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Sunday, January 14, 2007

A Song for Sunday #1 - The Winning Side

I have noticed several other blogs posting a hymn or a gospel song on Sundays and I have decided to follow least for a while. This first song in my series is a beutiful tribute to the wonderful, matchless grace that God has shown to this unworthy sinner. I struggled in my sin to find a place in this world until Jesus came along and shed his love abroad in my heart! He took me from a position of loss and heartache and placed me in a brand new family of love and victory. He placed me on the winning side!

Once I drifted out in sin, had no hope nor joy within
And my soul was burdened down with pride (with sinful pride)
Then my Savior came along and He showed me I was wrong
Now I know I'm on the winning side (the winning side)

Well I am on the winning side, Yes I am on the winning side
Out in sin no more will I abide (no more in sin abide)
I've enlisted in the fight for the cause of truth and right
Praise the Lord I'm on the winning side. (the winning side)

From the straight and narrow way I was drifting every day
Out upon the waters deep and wide (so deep and wide)
But it all is over now, glory light is on my brow
And my soul is on the winning side (the winning side)

I will never have a fear for my Lord is ever near
And in Him so often I confide (in Him confide)
He's the keeper of my soul since I gave Him full control
And He placed me on the winning side (the winning side)


Saturday, January 13, 2007

The Watchman Awards #6 – The Best of 2007

Thank you all for your wonderful support and encouragement since the inception of this blog. My readership and daily visits has been growing faster than I ever imagined. I mentioned last week that I was trying to compete against a rather unusual site at BlogTopSites. After making that mention, this blog has remained far ahead of the aforementioned competition. Thank you.

Be sure to tune in this coming week and in the weeks to follow. I have a lot of material that I hope to cover in the near future and some major announcements that I will be making public sometime quite soon. During the first few days of this coming week, I will be posting a series on the Holy Spirit and his work in the lives of believers. Please don’t tune it out and think that it does not apply to you. Every person, regardless of age, sex, occupation, or any other factor, needs the Holy Spirit to be actively working in their life.

Towards the end of the week, I will begin a series on blogging. That’s right. I will be posting a series of articles covering some of the things that I have learned since I began blogging. I am always looking for ways to improve my blog, and most of the people whose blogs I read are doing the same. In this series, I will be posting tips and ideas on how to create a successful, growing blog. I will be covering information relating to content, quality, blog layout, feeds and subscriptions, comments and dialogue, how to get blog ideas, and much more! Don’t miss it!

The weeks seem to be absolutely just flying by. It seems that I just launched the Watchman Awards yesterday when in fact it has now been six weeks. Thank you all for stopping by and I hope that you enjoy this weeks Watchman Awards.

1st. Unashamed Workman: The Case for Preaching (Part 1) – “We’ve all heard the criticisms. From the subtle jibe, ‘the preacher went on a bit this morning’ (which persists no matter how short the sermon gets) to the blatant diatribe, ‘preaching is an outdated form of communication.’ It seems that despite all the advances in 21st century education, attention spans are shorter than ever. Moreover, in an image conscious culture people cannot deal with an onslaught of words. Apparently. But this blog - and an increasing number of evangelicals - takes a different view. We believe on the basis of Scripture that there remains a place for preaching. A pre-eminent place.”

2nd. An Heir of Grace: Women in de Military – “I grew up in a mi1itary family, I joined the m1litary when I was 19, and I married a career m1litary man. I have known many excellent active duty m1litary women in my lifetime who have been poster ladies for w0men in the m1litary. In jobs where physical strength is not a component in performing a the job well, I think women can and do perform on the job as well as, if not better than men. All that said, over the past several years I have come to think that America’s m1litary would be stronger if it was void of women.”

3rd. The Reforming Baptist: True Believers – “The Lord Jesus was constantly challenging people who were following Him to be His disciples indeed! He would teach parables that had to do with the Kingdom of God and those stories taught about who was in and who was out. It was pretty suprising how many people would show up to a Jesus meeting when there was free food and miracles, but when Jesus told them to take up the cross and follow Him, the multitudes instantly disappeared. Well, I don't want any of our people to disappear, but I don't want people attending once a week, dropping $5.00 in the plate, going home and thinking they are good Christians, or that they are saved when they may not be. One of the worse things you can do in a Fundamental Baptist church is to cause someone to doubt their salvation, yet it was Jesus Himself who ripped the facades off of cold religion to reveal to those who were not really saved that they had every reason to doubt their salvations.”


Friday, January 12, 2007

The Ministry of the Holy Spirit in the Life of the Believer (Part 1)

The Holy Spirit is perhaps the most misunderstood and unrecognized person of the trinity. He is currently dwelling within the heart of every born again believer working and ministering in outstanding ways, yet very seldom do we recognize him and thank him for this work. The Holy Spirit does many things in our lives that we seldom take time to study in the Bible or try to understand. The Holy Spirit’s indwelling, comforting, and empowering work are only a few of the many ministries that the Holy Spirit is presently and actively doing in the lives of the believers.

It is the Holy Spirit that first and foremost draws an unbeliever to Christ. John 16 tells us that the Holy Spirit will “reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.” The Holy Spirit draws us to Christ, and then as we fall to our knees under the conviction that he has brought on us and we call upon Christ to save us, the Holy Spirit indwells us and begins working in us in absolutely magnificent ways that we could never begin to understand before we were saved. Before salvation the Holy Spirit worked in our lives in a convicting manner that is designed to point our hearts toward God, but now as a born again believer the Holy Spirit’s ministries are limitless. He first indwells us and seals us as being saved. He then comforts us and begins to teach us concerning the things of God and the Will of God. He also begins to work in our lives in such a way as to set us free from living in the sins that shackled us before salvation and he begins to form the many Christ-like graces within our lives. It is also the Holy Spirit’s work to call men into service for him. Each of these works or ministries of the Holy Spirit are very important in the life of the believer and each will be reviewed throughout the course of this series beginning on Monday.

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Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Heaven and Hell: The Road To Paradise

The following is a poem that took me several years to complete. Yes, you read that correctly...several years. I wrote the first two verses when I was a sophomore in High School and followed up with the last two verses after I was in college. I certainly hope that it doesn't bore you all to read another poem. I hope that it can be a blessing to someone. Please let me know what you think.

I dare not speak, I cannot tell,
The way of man that leads to Hell.
The flames so fierce with such great woe,
TO such a place why would one go?
In that wretched place there is no light,
'Tis forever trapped in eternal night.
Where one is bound with fetter and chain,
Engulfed in fire that brings such pain.
Where in the distance one may ream,
The undying mobs unending scream.

I dare to speak, I can but tell,
The way of man that leads to Hell.
The path of a man that leads this way,
Is a life of sin, many people say.
A life of murder, lies, and rape,
As a child of some prehistoric ape,
Of life like this surely one will pay,
But 'tis not all that leads this way!
But 'tis the path of a life that's trod,
Alone! Alone! Apart from God!

I dare to speak, I'm compelled to tell,
The way of man that leads from Hell.
A place called heaven with a golden shore,
To such a place with wonder galore.
In that great place 'tis forever light,
Where I'll see my Christ with perfect sight.
Where one is free from sickness and pain,
Englulfed in wonder and eternal gain.
Where one may hear throughout the days,
The undying saints unending praise.

I dare to speak, I'm compelled to tell,
The way of man that leads from Hell.
The path of a man that leads this way,
Is a life of goodness, many people say.
A life of service, love, and prayer,
A saintly life that's filled with care.
Of life like this surely one will thrive,
But wil not cause us in Heaven to arrive.
But 'tis the path of a life that's trod,
Saved! Saved! With a trust in God!

By Nicholas Cardot


Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Feminism and the Modern Home (Part 2)

The issue in the minds of most liberal women is the idea of equality. They feel that to be a housewife is a disgrace and that they should not have to subject themselves to that low degree. They feel that the position of housewife is a lower position and that they should not have any more responsibility to fulfill that role than should the husband. The problem they have is that they look at the proper Biblical role of women as a lesser position than what they could achieve through other means. This is twisted, corrupted thinking. The Biblical pattern provides for the care and love of women. It provides for them to be honored and exalted. Yet the modernist looks at it as the opposite. The workforce is a hard place and a hard path to go. It is a place that the husband should not want the wife to have to lower herself to. If God leads then the husband and wife will go that direction, but that should not be the primary desire of the husband. He should have a desire to deliver his wife from having to live through life in the modern workforce. That is the once accepted Biblical pattern for women and the home.

This is the trend that has taken the minds of American women by storm in our modern generation of Americans. This trend has led to the breaking up of the family, the insecurity of children based on the lack of love and acceptance no longer being found in the home, and many more issues. Women were at one time the primary teacher of the children in the home. Today the public school systems have become the mental mothers of children in many ways. The school system is now the one who determines and teaches the children the philosophies that will affect him or her for the rest of their lives. They now provide for the children counselors and psychologists in an attempt to provide the emotional needs that the children can no longer find in their homes. They have counselors that will help them to determine their life occupation which was at one time the role of the mother and father. The public school system is brainwashing America’s youth into believing Atheism, evolution, and many other blasphemous lies of the devil. And this brainwashing is being allowed in part because of the rise of the feminist movement. The wife is now at work when she was at one time at home teaching, training, and loving her children. Stan has stepped in, transformed the philosophy of women, and is now destroying our children by the millions and millions.

We must understand that the way that God ordained is the way that God blesses. People cannot have proper, functional families and live in such a way that is in direct rebellion to the plan of God. America needs to turn back to God in the area of the family if she ever hopes to see God’s blessing on her again. The transforming of the family has brought about the transforming of the nation toward the sins of the devil and of hell. This transforming of the family has been heavily influenced by the rise and exaltation of the modern feminist movement.


Monday, January 8, 2007

Feminism and the Modern Home (Part 1)

At the founding of America the home was the most important thing in a person’s life. Men bleed and died in order to prepare a land where they, their families, and their posterity could live in freedom and prosperity. They fought with their lives to protect and prosper their children, their wives…their families. Men worked hard to provide for the home, often working far more than eight hour shifts, far more than five days a week, far more than is the norm of today. Women of the day were exalted, loved, and taken care of.

These women loved their families and counted it a great honor to raise and rear children with godly principles of hard work and character. Women of those days didn’t look at being a housewife as a chore, but as a privilege. They loved their children to the point that they wanted to give all that they had to see them grow up to be men and women of character for the next generation.

God’s design for the home is very similar to the way of life that was the accepted norm for the home in the early American republic. Yet today the home has become a very unimportant part of society. Nearly fifty percent or more of modern marriages end in divorce. Millions of children across America have no idea who their real, biological parents are because their parents live in fornication and adultery to an extreme degree. The modern family is in a sad, sad condition. Statistics tell us that Christian homes have the same, if not a higher, rate of divorce than married couples of lost families. This is not God’s plan for our lives or for this great nation but is a demonstration of how much the sinful trends of the world have infiltrated the lives and families of Christians.

Satan knows that if he can destroy the home then he can destroy the church and the nation. To accomplish this destruction of the home he has tried to fill the minds of wives with discontentment. God does not intend to make a women suffer through raising children, but it is His intention that children are to be a blessing and an heritage of the Lord. Yet Satan has reversed this godly trend that once dominated the minds of American wives and has put in them a spirit of discontentment and rebellion. He has slipped into their minds a desire to be free from the so-called bonds of being a housewife and has tried to encourage them to desire their equality with men. God intended that women be exalted, honored, and loved by their husbands. Satan is transforming that once accepted norm into a desire to be above men in such a way that would cause them to be in inappropriate positions. Satan is duping women into believing these thoughts of equality and freedom from being a housewife and is destroying our homes and our nation. Children now have to grow up with no understanding of the love of two parents living under one roof, sharing, caring, and providing for one another.


Saturday, January 6, 2007

The Watchman Awards #5 – The Best of 2007

Another week…another winner, or rather another three winners! Welcome back, ladies and gentlemen, to another week of the almost world famous Watchman Awards. I have been getting calls from all the major news networks and a few local news networks requesting exclusive interviews which I have, of course, declined. Fox News, CNN, Rush Limbaugh, Larry King, and many others have requested me on their shows......

On a slightly more serious note, I would personally like to welcome you all to this exciting new year. I hope that you all find many blessings and that you all take time to draw yourselves closer to God. I know that I made a lot of mistakes in 2006 and I look forward to this wonderful opportunity to move forward in a better, more positive way. I hope to make the most of this year. I am planning to do some things that are totally outside the box. I just want to serve my awesome God in extraordinary days.

I had been planning on blogging my devotions throughout this year at another blog, but have since decided not to. It seems that that site didn't generate the attention that I had hoped it would whereas The Watchman has been growing in readership and subscribers. Thank you all for your loyal readership. In fact, I have been pleased to know that I have moved up into the top 100 blogs in my category at topblogsites as can be seen in my sidebar under the section entitled "Watchman Statistics." The rank is based on the number of my visitors compared to the number of visitors at the competing blogs. My rank has been holding between 80 and 100. Thank you to all of you for making that happen! I actually went to their site recently (which can be accessed by clicking the button in the sidebar) and began browsing through some of the blogs that are beating me. The blog positioned directly above my blog was a site covering Christian Gay issues. Friends, you have to help me. I can't let someone covering such a perverted topic in the name of Christianity beat me! Every time you visit my blog it is a vote in my direction. This other blog was ahead of mine by only three votes at the time I checked it last. How embarrassing!

Please continue to let your friends and readers know about my humble blog. You will see that I added some buttons on the sidebar under the section entitled "Watchman Links." These can be added to your website or blog.

Also on the sidebar, under the section entitled "The Watchman Speaks" you will find a list of the categories on which I have written. I have almost completed my goal of creating a category for every letter of the alphabet. I have completed all but the letter "X." This is where I need your help. If you know of a good Christian topic that starts with this letter, I beg you to let me know. Also, if you have any ideas for names of a category that I should change or adjust please let me know.

Thank you all for stopping by and checking out this week’s Watchman Awards. Don’t forget to leave some comments letting me know which posts you thought were the best. Comments are like the icing on the cake for me, so don't be shy. Remember also that you can always nominate blog posts for next weeks award. Anything posted on Sunday or later is eligible for this coming week’s Watchman Awards.

Well, let's get into it and open this year in the fine fashion of another set of awards. Let's recognize the best and the brightest bloggers. I certainly had more to choose from with everyone returning from their Christmas breaks and blogging again. Here are a few of the best that I have found this week.

1st. Pyromaniacs: The Bible and Our Decisions – “So there it is: arguably the most crucial decision a human being can make, and she's free to make up her own mind and do her own wise choosing — within the moral absolutes God has laid down. And so here we see two major and conflicting concepts of the will of God: the pin-prick concept, and Biblical concept.”

2nd. Josh Harris: Teach Us to Number Our Days – “Coming to a start of a new year is a reminder that we need wisdom. We’re given a fresh slate—a brand new span of time and the question we all face is "What will we do with it? How do we make the most of it?" We need wisdom. Wisdom is the ownership of insight. It’s seeing what is most important, and then living accordingly. Eugene Peterson defines wisdom as "the art of living skillfully in whatever actual conditions we find ourselves."

3rd. Kristina’s Keepsakes: For the Gospel’s Sake – “There are missionaries who today are in foreign jails because they preached the gospel of Jesus Christ. There are those that are not even allowed to own a Bible, but do anyway, and get caught and tortured. We on the other hand have the freedom to own a Bible and to tell others, yet most Christians are afraid of what people might think if they tell some one about Jesus.”


Friday, January 5, 2007

A Child of the King: The Struggle of a Troubled Youth

The following is a poem that I wrote when I was in High School. I spent much time coping with a disfunctional family situation and it took some time for me to accept God's will in this regard. This poem is the expression of that struggle and the victory that I found in Christ.

Walking through life as time passes me by,
Surrounded by people who can’t hear my cry.
Living and searching for a place to belong,
I find in my heart there’s no joy, there’s no song.
Where is my place in this world of despair?
Could anyone love, or just try to care,
For a small lonely boy at the end of his rope?
Yet no help I find, no man gives me hope.

As a child with my father, we shared such a joy,
To him I was Son, his proud little boy.
My dad was not perfect, but his love I could see,
When he’d hug me real tight as I sat on his knee.
Those times that we shared, that love that we had,
Filled my heart with great pride as I called him my dad.
As my mind now goes back and I think on those days,
My eyes fill with tears and all my sight is a haze.

Things were so grand, yet how could I see,
That life would soon take my dear father from me.
I took it for granted, that time that we shared,
Seldom would I let him know that I cared.
And now that he’s gone I understand what love is,
I’d give my own life if I could save his.
I never understood what great things I had,
Until on that day I was taken from my dad.

My mother was gone; when I was young she had fled.
She lived her own life as if I were dead.
Though I’ve missed her at times and longed for the love,
Of a mother who cares, a sweet gift from above,
I’ve learned to press on, to keep going forward.
Hoping to see her, I keep walking toward,
The goals of my life as I still long to see,
The one who has power to bring great comfort to me.

I dreamed of her often, I dreamed of her much.
To look on her face, to reach out and touch,
To live my whole life with a mother to share,
My heartaches and pains and know that she’d care.
I longed for a shoulder to cry out my fears,
A women to love and take all my tears.
But all these were dreams, fantasies at best,
So yet in my heart I still found no rest.

Walking through life as time passes me by,
Surrounded by people who can’t hear me cry.
I look up to the savior, who for me gave his life,
And I know in full faith that he can calm all my strife.
And when all had forsook me, God sent from above,
The savior to guide me through his holy great love.
Now I bow down in shame as he walks by my side;
‘Tis the greatest of all who now acts as my guide.

Walking through life as time passes me by,
Surrounded by people who can’t hear me cry.
Living and searching for a place to belong,
I now find in my heart a great joy, a great song.
I’ve now found my place in this world of despair,
For Christ gave his love, much more than mere care,
For a poor lonely boy at the end of his rope,
Christ now holds my hand and gives my great hope.

By Nicholas Cardot

“When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me up.”
Psalm 27:10


Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Missed Blessings (Part 3)

If you have not read the second installment of my "Missed Blessings" series, you should do so now. It is, perhaps, the most practical look at the subject.

Missed Blessings (Part 2)

God desires to bless His children. He wants to pour out his love and provisions on all those who are born again. He is, however, according to Psalm 81, limited based on our lifestyles. If this is true, then what is it that we do to hinder the blessings of God in our lives? Let's examine for a few moments the text that we have been considering these last few days...Psalm 81.

  • We are Disobedient Hearers – “But my people would not hearken to my voice…” (vs. 11)

There are three ways in which we can be participants in this sin. First, we can not really pay attention when He speaks. Often times while I am working on something, my wife will begin to tell me about something. Not really paying attention, I will nod and attempt to make it appear as though I am really paying attention. “Have you even listened to one word that I’ve said?” she will eventually say. I call this listening with my “man ears.” Often we listen to God with our man ears. In other words, we just pretend like we are listening.

Second, we can listen and acknowledge what we have heard, but we soon forget. If my wife asks me to take a trip to the grocery store, I will probably forget half the list if I do not write it down. The same is true in our spiritual life. We often hear God speak to us through His word. We then make a decision to serve Him, and then we forget all about it. We need to safeguard against this by writing down our decisions or by asking our spouse or a close friend to keep us accountable. We must not forget the decisions that we have made for Christ.

Third, we willingly disobey God’s Word. We clearly hear and understand that God wants us to live a certain way. When faced with the opportunity to practice what we have heard, our memory is crystal clear. We know what is right, and yet we just don’t do it. “I know I shouldn’t be doing this but….” This is often our creed. We have to eliminate this philosophy from our lives completely. There is no excuse for this type of behavior, and it causes God to withhold many blessings from our lives.

  • We have Distracted Hearts – “So I gave them up unto their own hearts' lust…” (vs. 12)

The nation of Israel was so consumed with their own heart’s lusts that God eventually just let them go after them. The desires of their hearts distracted them from serving and loving God the way that they should have.

Often times, Christians are more consumed and distracted with the cares of the world than the world is. Christians are constantly seeking new cars, new houses, and stuff to put in their new cars and new houses. They are following the world’s trends, the world’s sports, and everything else of the world, but have no concern for the things of God. Christians who live like this are living a distracted life following after their own heart’s lusts.

  • We follow Destructive Help – “…and they walked in their own counsels.” (vs. 12)

Rather than obeying the clear advice and counsel provided by God through His Word or through His man, we often seek counsel from friends and fools.

We will ask the preacher for his advice on some matter of great importance to us and he will gladly provide advice based on the principles in the Word of God. We will then follow up that visit with a visit to our friends who, rather than confirming what the preacher said, will begin to advise us in another direction. Their advice will seem to make good sense because, after all, they are you’re friends and they really understand you. We fool ourselves into thinking that our friends have more wisdom than God’s Word.

If it is not our friends we are listening to then it is the fools to whom we listen. These are found everywhere. Advice columns are located in the paper. Radio and television talk shows are dispensing opinions like a manure spreader on a country farm. Personally, I enjoy listening to some conservative talk show hosts about politics. As soon as they say something that is contrary to the clear teachings of God’s Word, however, I turn them off. I don’t care if it is Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Oprah Winfrey or Dr. Phil. If they begin speaking something contrary to God’s Word, they are a fool and I am a greater fool for listening. (No…I do not listen to all the names I just mentioned.)

God desires to fill our lives with blessings. He is only held back by our lack of surrender to His will. We are the reason God doesn’t bless us, not God. The fault is on our own hands, not His.

“He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” ~ Romans 8:32

When we stop and look at all the blessings that we wish we had, we often get bitter that God is not blessing us the way that he is blessing others. The truth is that we are too lazy to take the time and effort to line ourselves up with God’s Word and put ourselves in the place of His blessings. We need to get under the spout where the glory comes out!


Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Missed Blessings (Part 2)

After years with no rain, the brook by which Elijah had been living had dried up. There was no longer any water to drink and the ravens were no longer bringing meat for the prophet to eat. God instructed Elijah to move along…and so he did.

When he arrived in town, Elijah found a poor widow woman preparing the last meal that she and her son were ever going to eat. She and her son were going to enjoy one last meal and then they were fully prepared to sit down and starve to death. When Elijah found this woman, he apparently had an appetite because he instructed her to prepare the meal for him rather than for her son.

By any reasoning, the woman should have refused. Who was this man to ask her to sacrifice the food that belonged to her starving son? And yet, for some reason she decides to oblige and prepare the food for Elijah. She refused to make her decision based on her circumstances. She simply did what she believed was right.

As a result of her decision to honor the man of God, we know that the needs of the widow woman were always met. She and her son never did starve. Every day there was enough food to provide for them for one more day. Can you imagine the monumental blessings that she would have missed had she not obeyed the man of God? I am afraid that if it had been you or I, we probably would have starved to death long ago!

A few months ago, a student at the college that I just graduated from was expelled for possessing an alcoholic beverage. He then went on to run away with another young lady from the college. They began drinking together, sleeping together, and doing several other things together that are very ungodly.

People from the church begged them to turn away from their sin and to give their lives back to Christ. Christ would have gladly taken them back into His blessed arms of fellowship and love. Instead, however, they only moved further into their sin.

She soon became pregnant and they began to plan a family together. They were probably quite excited about the prospect of being parents. That is, of course, until yesterday.

On January 1, 2007, the dawn of a beautiful new year, their lives were changed forever. On the road in front of a school in Kentucky, this young man was involved in a tragic car accident. Two vehicles collided resulting in the deaths of each of the drivers. This young man was one of those two drivers. You can select the image on the left to read the article and watch a news clip about the accident.

Fortunately, the young lady was not in the vehicle at the time. Her life was spared…but left in a catastrophe. She is now pregnant and the father of her child is dead. She will be forced to raise the child as a single mother. How sad.

Of course, our hearts break. I had worked on a bus route with this young man during my time at the college. I had been in the same classes as these two young people. I had brushed past both of them every day that I attended college. I knew them and their situation very personally. How can we even begin to imagine the pain that she is experiencing at this time? How can we begin to understand the heartache that this young lady now posesses? I am, however, forced to wonder if it might have been avoided had they been giving their hearts to Christ.

I do not believe for one moment that Christ desired for this to happen to them. I believe, based on the Word of God, that he would have happily placed his arm of protection around them. I believe, however, that he was limited from doing so by their lifestyle of rebellion. I can almost hear God echoing the words of the 81st Psalm, “Oh that my people had hearkened unto me…”


Monday, January 1, 2007

Missed Blessings (Part 1)

I want to wish everyone a very happy New Year. I hope that this year brings prosperity and blessings to each of you. Please take some time this year to draw your heart closer to God. I would like to kick off this year with an article about the blessings that I hope you might enjoy but am afraid that many of us won't!

“Oh that my people had hearkened unto me, and Israel had walked in my ways! I should have subdued their enemies, and turned y hand against their adversaries.” ~ Psalm 81:13-14

Could you imagine the heartfelt pain that a father would feel when his son makes a life altering mistake? “Oh Son!” he might say, “Why! Oh, Why would you do this?” The father would cry and bemoan the mistake that his beloved son made because he knows and understands the pain that his son must now face. In Psalm 81:13, our Lord seems to play the part of the broken-hearted father. He seems to be painfully mourning the decisions that Israel, His chosen people, had been making.

If you read through the 81st psalm you will find the beautiful story of God’s deliverance of the nation of Israel out of Egypt. God brought them out with a strong arm and revealed unto them His power and presence. And yet, despite all of His marvelous works among His people, God was rejected of them. They turned their back on Him time after time and forced God to withhold his gracious hand of blessing. God wanted to pour out His blessings on them in ways that they could not begin to imagine, but was limited in this regard by their lack of obedience.

According to this chapter, our gracious Heavenly Father wants to bless us in so many ways:

  1. He wants to provide the victory in our lives. “I should soon have subdued their enemies, and turned my hand against their adversaries.” (vs. 14). It was God’s desire to provide a wonderful deliverance from any and all those who would oppose them just as it is currently His desire to provide for us victory today over Satan. We cannot gain any victories in our Christian life by using our own human strengths…we must have the help of God.

  2. He wants to provide the needs in our lives. “He should have fed them also with the finest of the wheat…” (vs. 16). It was God’s desire to provide for these people all of their physical needs and He again has the same desires today. When we lack in any of our physical needs, it is not because God desires that of us, but because we have done something to close the conduit of God’s blessings into our lives.

  3. He wants to provide the wants in our lives. “…And with honey out of the rock should I have satisfied thee.” (vs. 16). Honey is in my opinion a fantastic luxury in life. Just last night I was eating it by the spoonful. I understand that I may have been going a little extreme, but I think that most of us will agree that honey is a wonderful food. When I am able to go to Cracker Barrel, the restaurant, I love to take their biscuits and load them with butter and honey! Mmmmmmm. I love it. We don’t need honey for anything in life. It is nothing more than a luxurious desire that we have. And yet, God wants to provide for us the sweet luxuries of life just as He wants to provide anything else.
As Christians, we are missing out on many of these blessings in life because of how we live. I just can’t imagine the blessings that we would see in our churches today if Christians across the nation simply surrendered their lives to Christ and fell in love with God all over again! Quit holding back! God will provide if we will simply yield ourselves to Him!