God and Dad: A Father

by Bruce Feiler

New York Times bestselling author of The Council of Dads and America’s Prophet

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Buy your copy of Glenn’s latest recommended book, The Council of Dads by Bruce Feiler.  Or pick up Bruce’s New York Times bestseller, America’s Prophet, which Glenn called “the best book of narrative history I have ever read.  I cannot recommend it highly enough.  To learn more, or watch a video of Bruce talking about the life lessons of his fathers, please visit www.councilofdads.com


Why are men abandoning God?

Religion is increasingly a woman’s domain in America.  Two-thirds of church and synagogue attendees are women, studies show, with young men fleeing the pews even faster.  On any given weekend, 13 million more women than men will attend religious institutions.

Home is even worse.  Moms are usually the ones talking about God at the dinner table.  When the topic turns to faith, Dad is usually out to lunch.

What a shame.  Fathers can find great inspiration in faith.  For the last dozen years, I’ve traced the influence of the Bible through the Middle East and America looking at how religious figures from the past are relevant to today’s families.  In Walking the Bible, I climbed Mount Ararat, crossed the Red Sea, and spent weeks recreating the Exodus through the desert.  In Where God Was Born, I continued that journey through the second half the Bible in Israel, Iraq, and Iran.  In America’s Prophet, I explored how the story of Moses has influenced Americans from the Liberty Bell, through the Statue of Liberty, through Cecil B. DeMille and Charlton Heston. 

Two years ago this week I was struck by a life-threatening illness and suddenly my travels took a more personal turn.  What lessons of faith would I pass on to my three-year-old twin daughters?  My new book, The Council of Dads, includes a Father’s Four Lessons of Faith.

1.  Wrestle with GodIn Genesis 32, Jacob wrestles with a messenger of God.  The two come to a standstill, and the messenger leaves a mark on Jacob.  The scar does not end up on Jacob’s hand, nor on his head, his heart, or his eyes.  Humans experience God, the text suggests, not by touching him, imagining him, feeling him, or seeing him.  Jacob is scarred on his leg, for the essential way humans experience God is by walking with him.  Forever after, Jacob is called “Israel,” one who wrestles with God.  Don’t be afraid of doubt.  The true way to experience the divine is struggle  with him. 

2.  Befriend the Stranger.  There’s a reason the Exodus story has inspired so many Americans.  It’s a narrative of home.  “This year we are slaves, but next year we can be free.”  History is not set in stone.  It is not an immovable pyramid.  The pyramid can be flipped.  When you despair, when you hurt, when you fear – and especially when you encounter those feelings in others – remember the slaves who first groaned under bondage.  You should read the Israelites’ story and remember: There is a moral dimension to the universe.  Right can prevail over might; justice can triumph over evil.  Flip a few pyramids yourselves along the way.  Overturn injustice.  Befriend the stranger, for you, yourselves, were strangers once in a land with no hope.

3.  Plunge Into the Waters. One reason Moses is America’s true founding father is that evangelizes action; he justifies risk.  He gives ordinary people the courage to live with uncertainty.  The visionaries who have been inspired by him – Christopher Columbus, Benjamin Franklin, Harriet Tubman, Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King – were not born to greatness.  They became great by tapping into the anger and hope within themselves.  Imagine your own promised land, girls, plunge into the waters, persevere through the dryness, and don’t be surprised – or saddened – if you’re stopped just short of your dream.  Because the ultimate lesson of Moses’ life is that the dream does not die with the dreamer, and the true destination in a narrative of hope is not this year at all.  But next.

4.  Be Reunited With the Ones You Love.  The Council of Dads tells the story of my “lost year” fighting cancer and the men I asked to be father figures to my daughters.  Today I am cancer-free, and I learned a powerful lesson during that experience.  The Liberty Bell has a quote from Moses on its side, “Proclaim Liberty throughout the world, unto all the inhabitants thereof.”  This line refers to a tradition whereby every seven years, farmers are obliged to give their fields a year of rest.  Every 49 years the land gets an extra year of rest, during which all families are reunited, and all people reunited with the ones they love.  That fiftieth year is called the jubilee year.  That tradition perfectly captures my experience.  My “lost year” was my jubilee year.  I was needy.  I was a stranger.  I was reunited with the ones I love.  Don't forget to slow down, girls.  Reunite with the ones you love.

Take trips.  Take chances.  Take off.

The great beyond. What does it hide from us? Do unknown lifeforms linger in the dark? In other words, was David Bowie right? Is there life on Mars? The head of Harvard University's Astronomy Department contends that, yes, there is. Well, not that there's life on Mars. I'll explain in just a minute.

In an academic article for the Astrophysical Journal Letters, Dr. Avi Loeb, the head of Harvard University's Astronomy Department, claimed that an alien probe entered our solar system. He claimed that it is masked as the space rock Oumuamua (Ow-moo-ah-moo-ah), "the first interstellar object to enter our solar system." It turns out that "space rock" is way more than a musical genre.

RELATED: Science saves us again: Octopuses are really aliens who crash-landed on Earth

In his own words:

Considering an artificial origin, one possibility is that 'Oumuamua is a lightsail, floating in interstellar space as a debris from an advanced technological equipment.

His evidence? pointed to the space rock's abnormal acceleration, activity which he gathered via the Hubble Space Telescope.

He added that "the lightsail technology might be abundantly used for transportation of cargo between planets."

Sounds a bit like Star Wars, no? Or are you more of a Star Trek fan? Either way, it's an odd thing to hear from the head of Harvard University's Astronomy Department. Typically, we hear these sorts of things from the darker corners of the History Channel.

Well, I'll say that, at this point, I'm not really surprised. It's 2019. I'm not surprised by anything anymore.

"I don't care what people say," Loeb said. "It doesn't matter to me. I say what I think, and if the broad public takes an interest in what I say, that's a welcome result as far as I'm concerned, but an indirect result. Science isn't like politics: It is not based on popularity polls."

Honestly, I believe the guy. Well, I'll say that, at this point, I'm not really surprised. It's 2019. I'm not surprised by anything anymore. Heck, I welcome alien lifeforms. Maybe they can give us some advice on how to get our world together.

The third annual Women's March is approaching, and the movement has shown signs of strife. It's imploding, really. An article in Tablet Magazine revealed deep-seated antisemitism among the co-chairs of the movement, which is funny for a movement that brands itself as a haven of "intersectionality." The examples pile up, and just yesterday there was another. I'll tell you about it in a minute.

The Women's March has been imploding, and it started at the very top. Four women have come to represent the diverse face of the movement, the co-chairs: Tamika Mallory, Carmen Perez, Linda Sarsour, and Bob Bland.

RELATED: LEFTIST INSANITY: Woman attacked at women's rights rally for exercising her rights

Increasingly, we've learned that anti-Semitism is common among these women.

Teresa Shook, who founded the Women's March has repeatedly asked them to step down: The co-chairs "have steered the Movement away from its true course. I have waited, hoping they would right the ship," Shook wrote. "But they have not. In opposition to our Unity Principles, they have allowed anti-Semitism, anti-LBGTQIA sentiment and hateful, racist rhetoric to become a part of the platform by their refusal to separate themselves from groups that espouse these racist, hateful beliefs."

Tamika Mallory gave us the latest example, by continuing to stand by Louis Farrakhan. Check out Tamika's arrogant, nonsensical response. But the real problem came at the end of Mallory's rambling non-answer.



Women's March Leader Tamika Mallory Doubles Down On Love For Louis Farrakhan youtu.be


Later this week I'll go over the entire controversy on Glenn TV. It's harrowing, really. For now, I'll leave you with this. Critics of 4th wave feminism have argued that the radical identity politics of the left will lead to the exact kind of mistreatment that feminists claim to be against. That argument has been written off as using the slippery slope fallacy. But, as we see with the Women's March, it is in fact a brutal reality.

Remember how serious Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi were last week, when they gave their "rebuttal" to President Trump's address? They made it seem like this government shutdown is apocalyptic. A lot of Democrats have done the same. On social media and CNN at least. Thirty Democrats, however, took a different route. Puerto Rico. For cocktails at the beach.

RELATED: The President won the night, but don't count on the media to admit it

A group of 30 Democrats have turned the government shutdown into a live-action interpretation of a Jimmy Buffet song:

Nibblin' on sponge cake, Watchin' the sun bake.

No, seriously. In the words of Press Secretary Sarah Sanders:

Democrats in Congress are so alarmed about federal workers not getting paid they're partying on the beach instead of negotiating a compromise to reopen the government and secure the border.

A photo of New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez at a resort beach has gone viral.

They arrived via chartered jet. They're staying at a seaside resort, and attended the ridiculously-priced and overhyped play "Hamilton," where tickets for opening night "ranged from $10 to $5,000," according to the Associated Press. They even attended several afterparties.

Of course, the official occasion seems legit. They're in San Juan for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus BOLD PAC. According to a memo for the gathering:

This year's winter retreat promises to be our most widely attended yet with over 220 guests, including 39 Members of Congress and CHC BOLD PAC supporters expected to attend and participate!

Also in attendance, about 109 lobbyists, from a number of places, including "R.J. Reynolds, Facebook, Comcast, Amazon, PhRMA, Microsoft, Intel, Verizon, and unions like the National Education Association."

Donald Jr. said it well:

And of course no one says anything. I'm not even in government and I'd get killed in the press if I was on vacation right now. Why won't they cover their democrat buddies lobbyist sponsored vacation in the islands???

Maduro takes office and Venezuelans vote with their feet

CRIS BOURONCLE/AFP/Getty Images

Venezuela continues to collapse. A country that used to have the world's largest oil reserves is now in rags. Its money is worthless, with inflation near one million percent. People must work an average of five days at minimum wage just to afford a dozen eggs. But there is one person still pumped about Venezuela's future – its noble president, Nicolas Maduro! I'll tell you why he's still enthusiastic in just a minute…

Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro had a stellar 2018. Here are some highlights:

  • Running water and electricity only work occasionally and prices for basic goods doubled.
  • Doctors, engineers, oil workers, and electricians fled the country en masse. Over 48,000 teachers also left the country.
  • Over half a million Venezuelans fled to Peru alone.

Maduro created a new digital currency called the "petro." One petro is supposed to equal the price of a barrel of oil, about $60. U.S. Treasury Department officials call the petro a scam. Who could've seen that coming?

Maduro also announced a 3,000 percent minimum-wage hike. Even Ocasio-Cortez might roll her eyes at that one. Or find it inspiring.

And just yesterday, a Human Rights Watch report detailed how Venezuelan intelligence and security forces are arresting and torturing military personnel and their family members who are accused of plotting against Maduro. The torture includes: "brutal beatings, asphyxiation, cutting soles of their feet with a razor blade, electric shocks, food deprivation, [and] forbidding them to go to the bathroom."

It's so bad in Venezuela that even The Washington Post admits Venezuela's problems are mostly due to "failed socialist policies." But President Nicolas Maduro gave a televised New Year's address calling 2019, "the year of new beginnings." He's pumped, you see, because today he will be sworn in for his second six-year term as president. He was "re-elected" last May in an election that the international community declared illegitimate.

Thirteen nations released a statement last week urging Maduro not to take office and saying they would not recognize his presidency.

Maduro doesn't have many friends left at home or abroad. Thirteen nations released a statement last week urging Maduro not to take office and saying they would not recognize his presidency. This week, the U.S. added more Venezuelan officials to its sanctions list.

In a press conference yesterday, Maduro said:

There's a coup against me, led by Washington. I tell our civilians and our military to be ready. Our people will respond.

I think the people of Venezuela who have the means are already responding – by leaving.