About Me

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Jim Killebrew has 40 years of clinical psychological work for people with intellectual disabilities, and experience teaching, administration, consulting, writing with multiple publications. Dr. Killebrew has attended four Universities and received advanced degrees. Southern Illinois University; Ph.D., Educational Psychology; University of Illinois at Springfield, Counseling Education; M.A., Human Development Counseling; Northeastern Oklahoma State University, B.A., Psychology and Sociology. Dr. Killebrew attended Lincoln Christian Seminary (Now Lincoln Christian University). Writing contributions have been accepted and published in several journals: Hospital & Community Psychiatry, The Lookout, and Christian Standard (multiple articles). He may be reached at Killebrewjb@aol.com.

Welcome to my Opinion Pages

Thanks for stopping by and reading some of my thoughts. I hope you will find an enjoyable adventure here on my pages.



The articles are only my opinion and are never meant to hurt anyone nor to downgrade any other person's ideas or opinions.



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Thursday, December 27, 2012

Games we play

 


The shooter in Newtown, CT was said to be a gamer; spending time with the electronic games where the hunter became the winner by having the highest number of hits.  I attended a school program the other night where young children performed with classmates in the Christmas program.  I sat behind parents who had a child in the program.  The man sat through the entire program with his phone playing a game.  At one point the woman took the phone from him and snapped a few pictures of the children on stage.  When the phone returned, he promptly restarted his game and continued to play until the kid's program was completed.

 

Electronic games are like that.  Even when it does not desensitize the person with its content, it does seem to grab the person's attention to an almost addictive state.  Children have been playing the games on the market that have evolved into content that must be labeled.  Content unfit for anyone, including a mature adult.  After many hours of play, during required times of placing the game aside, children have reported they continue to think about the game and their scores and how they could "reach the next level."  That thought rumination competes directly with the "down time" activities where cognitive attention is required; it does affect memory and retention of learned material.  It pre-empts attempted learning of new skills and tends to shorten attention span and concentration.

 

Of course there are millions of children who have excellent cognitive skills and can overcome the effects of the constant barrage of more graphic games that help shape values toward more violence.  On the other hand, there are some children who tend to perseverate the material learned in those games and are unable to overcompensate and over-learn incompatible, appropriate material to replace the effects of the material internalized through repeated exposure to those games.  At this point in the games-crazed learning curve in our society, we just don't have enough empirical information to determine what, if any, more appropriate societal information is supplanted in the mind of the child at the expense of learning the more inappropriate material found in most of the action games.  Nor do we have enough information to determine which children can differentiate with appropriate decisions with actions that would counteract the effects of the conditioning of the violent material learned from the games.

 

There is no question electronic games do have an effect on the child's learning, thinking and actions, but it continues to be uncertain about which children will act on those vicariously learned actions seen in the games and which ones know the difference between non-reality and reality.  As a parent, we may think we have provided a sound reasoning as to how the effects of hours of playing the games can be turned or blunted:  We may have provided a stable, Christian home with competing, more appropriate attitudes and values counteracting the content contained in the games themselves.  But are we sure the images inside our child's mind remain imaginary or are becoming real.    

 

It is not my intent to make a sweeping generalization, but what we allow our children to spend their time with, especially hours of electronic games, is "Springtime and Harvest" and a reality experienced by us as a natural cycle of life.  We "reap what we sew" and it is always a process that is painstakingly slow.  Not every parent who works diligently to raise their child in the ways of right will always have the same results.  We know that competing factors reside in the heart of a child and there is always a chance for rebellion. 

 

Mostly, however, when children are socialized within the context of a nurturing, loving family where right and wrong are taught, along with respect for others, the chances of rebellion are slightly possible, but are exponentially greater that the child will return when he is older and will not depart from his early nurturing and training.  Further, his departure will not be to the extent it takes him to the depths of evil, but just to the brink of a searing conscience that is undergirded with the loving principles of a sound, consistent family life.  At that point he will return to embrace his sense of right as his own instead of those borrowed from his parents.

 

Committees, councils, Commissions and study groups at the highest levels will re-hash this issue of evil acted out at Newtown, CT.  But if they only looked at thousands of testimonies from families that took the time to "train up their child in the way they should go" those Commission members would find the answer right in front of their faces.  Banning guns will not be the total answer.

 
Jim Killebrew   

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Worship at the manger

 
Being God manifested in the flesh at the Advent, Jesus is unique from all other creation.  He was there in the beginning, the instrument of Creation, the long-awaited Messiah, the dispenser of Grace, the Ultimate Blood Sacrifice, the founder and Head of the Church and at the end, the final Judge of all Creation.  Although He could have been born anywhere and under any circumstances, He chose to be born outside of the Inn since there was no room for Him there, wrapped in rags by his Mother and laid in a manger from which animals ate their food. 
 
His first visitors were the poorest of workers, Shepherds from the surrounding fields who were rarely invited to the King's Ball to mix with the societal elite.  He grew up in a modest economic home life where he learned the value of working for a living by using the craft learned from his Dad.  He learned responsibility for family, being the oldest, since apparently his earthly Dad died before he launched into His ministry.  Even His ministry was itinerate as He spread His Gospel to as many as He could reach.
 
For Someone who owned all of Creation He put little stock in riches.  His message was counter-culture focusing rather on "doing for the least of these" while being critical toward those of "religion" and wealth.  His compassion, empathy and love focused on meeting the needs of people rather than accumulating rank, power and wealth.
 
From our perspective, some two-thousand years hence from His appearing, we have become sophisticated in our complacency and rested in our assurance.  Scientists will nullify Him, atheists mock those who follow Him, doubters continue to disbelieve Him, ignorance of Him by the masses continue to prevail, many who believe themselves too educated to be bound by such dependency beliefs in Him continue to sneer at His very name and many in the world-at-large continue to try to kill Him by killing His followers. 
 
It seems, however, for those who have tried to obscure and diminish the name of Jesus over the centuries have simply failed.  A man born outside the Inn, laid in a manger, visited by shepherds, scorned by His own people during His lifetime, rejected by the religious hierarchy, nailed on a cross by the occupiers of his home country and laid in a borrowed grave, officially sealed by the government, He has caused quite a stir in our world.  From the first century until now He has had millions of followers, many of whom have given their own lives as martyrs rather than deny Him, millions more around the world who continue to follow Him and would also lay down their own lives rather than deny their strongly held belief in Him. 
 
Shepherds continue to visit Him and Wise Men still seek Him; for those of us who continue to place our faith in Him, we will once again gather around the manger to worship.
 
Jim Killebrew    

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

War on Christmas...Dragon's war

 
Perhaps among the most futile endeavors in which one can engage these days is the actions to make war on Christmas.  When you think about the efforts of Lucifer, the dragon, and the war he has perpetrated throughout history totally without avail, it seems almost a joke the weak efforts atheists and unbelievers are mounting in today's events.   
 
"Then the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that he might devour her child as soon as it was born."   "Then war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But the dragon was not strong enough to prevail, so there was no longer any place left in heaven for him and his angels. So that huge dragon – the ancient serpent, the one called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world – was thrown down to the earth, and his angels along with him."  "...But they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony...."  Ultimately the dragon will be dealt with, "And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet are too, and they will be tormented there day and night forever and ever."
 
So each time I hear of the "war on Christmas" I know it is only those who have decided to do the bidding of Satan who is making his last-ditch effort to win a battle he has already lost.  So Christians should not lose heart, the die has already been cast, the battle is already won and any small victory accorded to the followers of the dragon will be short-lived, their doom is already established and the Christian's victory is already assured!