Being a writer, it amused me when I got up early and walked into the living room to find our two big stuffed bears perched in the chair as if they had just returned from a nighttime frolic. It was easy to understand how authors had been inspired to write children’s stories about toys coming alive at night and frolicking. It’s all a matter of perception.

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Being a Christian, when I see a rainbow bending its bright colors across the sky, I think of God’s promises. Those who put rainbows on flags think of something else. It’s a matter of perception.

The gun issue raging in the U.S. is also a matter of perception. Some think outlawing guns will make it safe. They blame guns for violence. Others know that the problem is not in lifeless weapons that are powerless on their own, but rather in hearts full of hate. It takes a finger on a trigger to make a gun fire.

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Growing up in the country, it was essential to have a gun. My baby brother was saved by a gun when a copperhead snake, head raised in a striking position, locked its gaze on my youngest brother. We took guns to school for shooting classes. But there was never a school shooting, nor a single student injured. Learning to shoot a gun was considered as essential as driving lessons. Cars and guns are both tools, and both can be used beneficially or lethally.

Guns are essential in the Texas Hill Country where it’s not unusual to need a gun to stop the charge of a rabid animal, kill a rattlesnake, or protect livestock from predators.

My son was killed in a violent plane accident while on active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps. I understand a parent’s grief. I mourn with parents who have lost their children from any horror—including illness.

Luke's Bible

Some claim it’s a matter of perception, but I can’t understand how the same people who want to take away guns from non-violent people are okay with killing innocent, defenseless babies in the womb. The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution promises life and liberty to all its citizens. I don’t understand the perception of denying the protection of the First Amendment to citizens who need the greatest measure of protection. That’s why I wrote “Love’s Beating Heart.”


Some things are not perception. Some things are sin. Murder is a sin. Hiding hate in your heart that would lead to violence and murder is a sin. Killing babies and labeling it with socially acceptable labels like “choice” and “abortion” is a sin. Some values are not open to interpretation—they are set in stone by God.

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