Daily Briefing: August 10, 2017

Posted by    |    August 10th, 2017 at 5:18 am

T O P   N E W S

9. North Korea responds to US threats with Guam attack plan: ‘Only absolute force’ can work on Trump (Fox News)

“In a statement released by its state-run media, KCNA, the North Korean general who oversees the regime’s rocket command said it would complete its plan to attack waters near Guam by mid-August, then “wait for” orders from the commander in chief of its nuclear force.
“The statement comes after Trump took to Twitter on Wednesday, noting that the U.S. nuclear arsenal is “now far stronger and more powerful than ever before,” adding, “Hopefully we will never have to use this power, but there will never be a time that we are not the most powerful nation in the world!”

Nick Note: “The DPRK must choose to stop isolating itself and stand down its pursuit of nuclear weapons,” Mattis said in a statement. “The DPRK should cease any consideration of actions that would lead to the end of its regime and the destruction of its people.” Here is how past presidents have dealt with North Korea. Here are answers to four crucial questions regarding North Korea. Here is a primer on the territory of Guam. Experts suggest NK is not quite at the point of fielding a reliable intercontinental ballistic missile to hit the U.S. mainland, but they could be there by the year’s end.  So will they continue to test while the world watches? Do they have solid-fuel technology that would allow them to launch more quickly? Do they have the capacity to consistently launch from mobile launchers for surprise attacks? Are they at full capacity to launch from a submarine? We don’t know the answers but we do know the power of our prayers. You have the delighted ear of an all-powerful Father (Psalm 115:3, Proverbs 15:8).Today, would you consider praying for the students, professors, and administration at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology? Aslan is on the move in NK…

8. Atlanta gym owner makes no apologies for ‘No Cops’ sign (NBC Atlanta)

“We’ve had an explicitly stated ‘No Cop’ policy since we opened, and we also don’t open membership to active members of the military,” he said.
“For Chambers, a lifelong political activist, the sign and policy is a political statement outside a multi-use space which serves as a gym, community gathering spot and meeting place for activists in the metro area.”

Nick Note: I could give quite a few responses to this story, but the Atlanta PD gave the best. When asked to comment on the policy, they noted that if there was an emergency in the gym, no sign would stop them from doing their job.“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. (Matthew 5:43-44)”

C U L T U R A L   N E W S

7. Schools ditching homework for younger students in favor of reading, family time (USA Today)

“Instead, Superintendent Heidi Maier is urging families to read with their kids every night for at least 20 minutes.
“A 2013 study, led by Indiana University researcher Adam Maltese, found a positive relationship between homework for high school sophomores and performance on standardized tests. But it found little correlation between more homework and better math and science grades.
“Research on the benefits of homework for younger students is less definitive.Actually, Maier said, it’s basically non-existent. Pressed on whether simply giving students extra time at night to cover material has a benefit, she replied flatly: “Show me the research.”

Nick Note: High School Musical wants to Stick to the Status Quo but not today’s educators when it comes to homework. According to research, today’s students are doing more homework than students from 30 years ago. 91 percent of school-aged students attend public school. In the 1890s, less than 10 percent of children 14-17 did.  22 percent of 9-year-olds said they had no homework, 57 percent had less than an hour, 17 percent reported having more than an hour. Over the next few weeks, students will return from summer break and teachers will commit again to the hard work of educating the next generation. Will you join with me in praying for them this morning? (Luke 2:52, Galatians 1:17, Romans 15:30)

6. America’s Drinking Problem Is Much Worse This Century (Bloomberg)

“The number of adults who binge drink at least once a week could be as high as 30 million, greater than the population of every state save California, according to a study published in JAMA Psychiatry…Between the genders, women showed the larger increase in alcohol abuse, according to the report.
“About 12.6 percent of adults reported risky drinking during the previous year in 2012-13, compared with 9.7 percent in 2001-02. Behavior was considered high-risk if people surpassed the government’s guidelines for excessive alcohol intake, set at four drinks in one day for women and five drinks for men, at least once a week.”

Nick Note: Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your nameand it seems Americans largely have found that place in their neighborhood bar. In 1993, Americans spent $12 billion at drinking establishments. In 2015, $23 billion. “Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit… (Ephesians 5:18)”

5. Use Your Seat to Get Ahead at Work (WSJ)

“Proximity to high achievers can lift people’s performance in various jobs, via inspiration, peer pressure or new learning, a growing body of research shows.  Simply sitting next to a high achiever can improve someone’s performance by 3% to 16%, according to a two-year Northwestern University study of 2,452 help-desk and other client-service workers at a technology company.
“Productive employees—those who finished tasks quickly—raised the output of slower colleagues by 8%. Effective employees, who could handle customers’ problems without referring them to co-workers to finish, lifted their neighbors’ effectiveness by 16%. Quality workers, who received high ratings on customer surveys, inspired 3% improvements in colleagues’ quality ratings.”

Nick Note: Stand By Me? No thanks, Ben E. King but I will take a seat by you in music class. “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers. (Psalm 1:1)”

4. Stress at work is ‘causing’ poor mental health in men (BBC)

“32% of men with poor mental health said work was responsible for their illness, compared to just 14% of women. Only 29% of men surveyed said they’d taken time off work due to mental health issues, compared to 43% of women. The survey also found that men were less likely to do anything about problems when they came up.”

Nick Note: Do you have the Working Man Blues with Merle Haggard? Could it be due to an unhealthy emphasis upon work? According to research out of the Harvard Business Review, there is a difference between men and women in the workplace. Women have more life goals than men, but men have more goals focused on the accumulation of power in the workplace. “Women perceive professional power as less desirable than men do.” Work is good but it is not god. We should work hard but rest well (Genesis 2:15, Colossians 3:23, 1 Corinthians 10:31, Matthew 25:14-30, Mark 2:27).

3. Who Wears Short-Shorts? Not My Daughter (WSJ)

“The shortest pairs have inseams of a mere 2.25 inches and are sold as shortie, shorty or short-shorts in teen and childrens wear. Retailers say they are a bright spot in women’s shorts, a $2.4 billion category whose sales were relatively flat in the last year, according to NPD Group Inc.
“Among the more than 80 pairs of girls’ shorts on Hollister’s Web site, more than one third are labeled short-shorts, with a 2.5 inch inseam; high-rise styles are even shorter: 2.25 inches. The trend caught fire a year ago, popularized by the resurgence of late 1970s, skin-revealing styles, according to fashion and retail experts.”

Nick Note: We lived through the Zoot Suit Riot and today we navigate through the Short Shorts Skirmish. The Scriptures are relatively quiet on who wears short-shorts (2 Samuel 10:4), but Paul does write that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control (1 Timothy 2:9). Modesty comes from the idea of keeping within measure. For the Christian, the measures are dictated by the Scriptures (Psalm 119:105). Modesty is not intended to silence your fashion voice, but to respect you and show you that fashion is not your only voice. You are more than the clothes you wear and the body you have. If fashion is a statement, being immodest is yelling and forcing others to listen. Modesty says I have something worth listening to.

N E W S   Y O U   C A N   U S E

2. Oopsy-daisy! Adorable toddler proves show must go on

Nick Note: Watch it here. F. Scott Fitzgerald was right: “Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat.” (James 1:12)

1. Watch how this service dog helps its owner during a seizure

Nick Note: Watch it here. If dog is man’s best friend, just think about the great help that our good God offers. “One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. (Proverbs 18:24)” 

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