Our deepest sympathies go to the family of Beverly Orban, the 18 year old who passed away in a fatal car crash Aug. 16 near Mt. Pleasant, Tenn. Tragically, these crashes happen with alarming frequency. Crashes are the leading cause of death for teens in the U.S., and teens' crash risk is three times that of more experienced drivers.
Education is one step toward reducing teen driver crashes. As Beverly's Mt. Pleasant High School community mourns her death, it is my hope teachers and coaches take a moment to review safe driving tips and teen driving laws with students. A team of traffic safety experts developed the GDL Game Plan for coaches to help athletic coaches and teachers help protect new drivers from common crash risks. I encourage school administrators to utilize this tool, which is free and can be downloaded at nsc.org/tnteensafedriving.
The Tennessee Teen Safe Driving Coalition, an initiative of The Allstate Foundation and the National Safety Council, works at the grassroots level across our state to raise awareness and help prevent crashes such as Beverly's. With increased education and advocacy, I am confident we can make Tennessee's roads safer for everyone and ensure young drivers return home safely to their families each and every day.
KRISTI TOWNS, Jackson, Tenn.
The Creator's word to society is a warning of the collapse of societal characteristics during the last days before His return as He says: "People will become self-centered; greedy; arrogant; abusive; without morals; disobedient; ungrateful; unholy; heartless; unforgiving; slanderous; earth worshippers; without self control; brutal; treacherous; reckless; vicious; conceited; lovers of pleasure from whom people of faith are to avoid" (II Tim. 3, Gal. 5:1, Cor. 6: 9-10 and others). There are already many such people living in every city not to mention those in Washington D.C., the news media and Hollywood so wake up while there is still time. Remember, Rome fell from within because of the same societal characteristics. Will the USA be next?
"Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.
And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God." 1 Corinthians 6:9-11.
Church discipline is essential to biblical accountability and identity, unless the church sets its sails with the winds and trends of culture. Every fellowship has its standards. The Ridgedale Church of Christ didn't make this a public issue, and no one wants their lives thrown open to the public for critical examination and judgment. In fact, the text of 1 Corinthians warns against going outside the church for judgments.
Jesus said, "Beware when all men speak well of you." He also taught us to expect abuse from those who love their sin more than their Savior. Churches are not perfect, but we follow a perfect Savior and seek to reflect His character individually and corporately. Church membership brings with it benefits and responsibilities. Those who refuse to uphold the standards may rightly relinquish their membership.
GREG NANCE, Signal Mountain