4/15/2014

Obamacare--avoiding penalties

I just ran across this post that I had seen in December and then lost.  I like it because it has a run down of choices for insurance, including a sharing program that does not require you to be a church attender.

Here it is:

http://politicalcalculations.blogspot.com/2013/12/how-to-get-real-and-affordable-health.html#.U04ClOZdUmI

3/28/2014

Noah the Movie

I'm not a big movie goer, and I don't know yet whether I will go see the movie.  I've heard enough about Noah from people who have seen it to know that it does not accurately depict the story of Noah as told in the Bible.  I would guess that we Christians have a picture of Noah and his family in our minds from the lessons we learned in childhood, and those may not be accurate either.

That being said, I have mixed thoughts about going to see the movie.  I understand not wanting to participate in supporting a movie that is not Biblically accurate, but I also recognize that the writers and producers are not Christians and they just want to tell a good story.  From what I have heard, the movie is a great action film filled with imaginative ideas of how things might have happened.  I've also heard that Russell Crowe is excellent as Noah.

It also contains dark material (after all, almost everyone and everything dies) which means that it really should be R rated instead of PG-13 according to Michael Medved, a professional movie reviewer. Truthfully, I don't care for action movies or gore and death, so that would probably keep me from seeing it more than anything.

On the other side, the movie at least will get people thinking about the Bible stories.  Perhaps they will pick up the Bible and read it for themselves.  In that case, it might be good to see the movie in order to be able to discuss the differences between the movie and the truth in the Bible.  All in all, I like seeing the Bible moved to the front and center of discussion.  I think as Christians, we need to be be salt and light, and share the truth of God's word with love.

Also, I wonder if we Christians really think about our motives in accepting or rejecting a movie.  The VeggieTales series tells great moral stories, but broad leeway is taken with the truth of what happened in the actual story.  For example, in the story of Jonah, a talking worm is added, and the people of Ninevah are considered evil because they slap each other with fish.  Many of the things that happened in the Jonah movie are not Biblical at all, yet we Christians happily buy VeggieTale movies and encourage others to watch them.  I am guessing that this is because they are made by Christians and they are cute and fun.

Remembering the Biblical admonition to demonstrate love first, I close with I Corinthians 13:1 If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.

Here are links to a wide variety of thoughts and opinions--I'm sure there are many more!

Breitbart review  (excellent negative review about the twisting of scripture)

Thoughts from a Christian pastor who has a son playing Ham in the movie.  (positive)

Ken Ham--Answers in Genesis  (negative--He would be the best source for Biblical accuracy)

Michael Medved  (mixed)

Hugh Hewitt (positive)

Glenn Beck (negative)

Christianity Today (this link shares positive thoughts  but at the bottom of the post, you can go to negative thoughts)

Matt Walsh--excellent review--after reading this, I would definitely not want to see the movie.

Al Mohler--"If we don't tell the story, others will."

Interesting discussion of a Kabbalah theme used in the film

2/16/2014

Love and Math Book Review

Love and Math by Edward Frenkel

After hearing Mr Frenkel discuss his book on the Dennis Prager show, I was intrigued and knew I wanted to read it.  The book did not disappoint me!

Frenkel not only is a genius at mathematics, but he also is an interesting and entertaining author.  Although the book is filled with complex mathematical equations, it also contains numerous anecdotes about mathematicians in history as well as his own personal story.  

The book demonstrates a love for the objectivity and truth of math.  It is a subject that does not change, but is always there, waiting to be discovered.  Even though the author does not mention God, I immediately thought of God as the author of mathematics who has made the beautiful harmony and complexity in our world.

The main portion of the book discusses the Langlands program which is based on the mathematical theory of symmetry.  Frenkel tells the story of how this program has developed and what has been discovered.  He describes how the individual mathematical studies of algebra, geometry, and physics harmonize and demonstrates how a complex equation from one form of math can be inserted into another form of math to solve difficult problems.  

Obviously, Frenkel tells the story of his love for mathematics, and any reader with a desire to learn more about this discipline will be intrigued by this book.  I felt that I just barely scratched the surface of my understanding, so I will be reading it again later this year.
http://www.amazon.com/Love-Math-Heart-Hidden-Reality/dp/0465050743#

1/16/2014

It's official: We're health insurance free!

Effective January 1, 2014, we decided to drop our newly high priced health insurance ($1100 per month as opposed to our previous cost of $440 per month).

We are now with a Christian sharing program: http://samaritanministries.org/

If you use my blog and decide to go with this ministry as well, please let Samaritan know so that we can get credit. Send me a comment if you need to know my name.

Read previous posts for more information about health sharing programs and health insurance options by clicking on the Health Insurance label.  Scroll down to find labels.

1/01/2014

Book Review of Rush Limbaugh's Kids' Book Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims

Last year, I intended to start listing the books I read but I didn't get very far.  Today, January 1, I begin again.

I received the book Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims for Christmas, and I found it entertaining.  The book is written for children aged eight to twelve, and I think it would be appropriate for that age.  The cover and pages are of high quality, and historical photos are interspersed throughout the book.

"Rush Revere" and his time-traveling horse "Liberty" are the main characters of the story, and they travel back in history to the time the pilgrims set sail for America.  They go back and forth from past to present and finally end at the first Thanksgiving.  The story is told in an entertaining way and is written from a conservative perspective, as one would expect.

The history in the story is accurate (from William Bradford's account), and it is told in such a way that children will remember the facts.  Liberty gives a review quiz at the end of the story.  The time traveling was a little tedious to me, and I wondered why the Pilgrims didn't question why Rush, Liberty, and the time traveling children were only there part of the time.  However, that was part of the fun of the book, and I don't think young readers will care.

I think that this book will be well received and I look forward to Rush's future children's books.

11/10/2013

More information on ObamaCare or the ACA

I was curious about subsidies for ObamaCare, and I finally found information to help figure out if you qualify for subsidies.
This chart tells what 400% of poverty level is based on family size.  Those who earn under 400% qualify for subsidies.

http://www.familiesusa.org/resources/tools-for-advocates/guides/federal-poverty-guidelines.html

The amount a person has to pay for insurance is capped at a certain percentage of income based on where he is on the income chart.  Scroll midway through this webpage to find the "Federal Poverty Guidelines," and you can see about how much a person or family will be subsidized.

http://obamacarefacts.com/obamacare-subsidies.php

If you want to know a bit more about your options and insurance choices, check out these two websites:

http://kff.org/interactive/subsidy-calculator/

http://www.thehealthsherpa.com/

Note:  I just saw the link to the healthsherpa website at townhall.com, and the article by Mike Shedlock is interesting and helpful.

http://finance.townhall.com/columnists/mikeshedlock/2013/11/10/three-california-programmers-create-alternative-healthcare-website-n1743927?utm_source=thdaily&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=nl

If you want to know specifics about plans, you will need to go to the government websites.  What I don't see, at least at the California website, is a list of physicians covered by the plans.  Maybe I have to give more information to find that out.

If you don't qualify for subsidies, you should not use the government exchanges.  Instead, go directly to the insurance companies.  As I have previously posted, Christians can be a part of medical sharing programs and still be exempt from ACA penalties.  We are strongly considering this option.