Daily Archives: May 9, 2013

Texas court rules in favor of Kountze cheerleaders in Bible banner lawsuit

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By Tonya Andris
Inside The Pew

Hardin County District Court Judge Steven Thomas entered an order on

Kountze High School cheerleaders display a banner at a football game.

Photo courtesy of KHOU

May 8 that will allow a group of Kountze cheerleaders to display banners with Bible messages during school-sponsoring sporting events.

Thomas’ ruling states: “The Kountze cheerleaders’ banners that included religious messages and were displayed during the 2012 football season were constitutionally permissible. In addition, neither the Establishment Clause nor any other law prohibits the cheerleaders from using religious-themed banners at school sporting events. Neither the Establishment Clause nor any other law requires Kountze ISD to prohibit the inclusion of religious-themed banners at school sporting events.”

Kountze, a town of 2,100 residents 95 miles northeast of Houston, made national headlines in September 2012 when an unknown person filed a complaint with the Freedom From Religion Foundation that the banners, produced by middle- and high-school students, were unconstitutional because they advocated a particular religion.

After learning of the complaint, Kountze superintendent Kevin Weldon banned the cheerleaders from displaying the Bible-inspired messages on the banners. Then, in September 2012, Beaumont attorney David Starnes and Liberty Institute filed a lawsuit, Coti Matthews on behalf of her minor child, Macy Matthews, et al., v. Kountze Independent School District, on behalf of Kountze ISD cheerleaders and their parents.

On Oct. 18, 2012, the court granted a temporary injunction allowing the student-made religious banners to continue until a final decision in the case is made.

“We’re excited, relieved, and glad it’s over with,” Coti Matthews, mother of one of the cheerleaders, told ABC News.com May 8.

“We especially appreciate the efforts of Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, who intervened into the case in support of the cheerleaders,” said Hiram Sasser, Liberty Institute’s Director of Litigation. “The extra efforts of Deputy Solicitor General Adam Aston were instrumental in the successful resolution of this case.”


Red Letter Paper Company helps customers ‘send a little faith’

Published by:

Stephanie Hinderer

By Stephanie Hinderer
Special to Inside The Pew

SANTA FE, N.M. – What is the name of your business? What type ofStephanie Hinderer business is it?

“My business is called Red Letter Paper Company (aka RLPCo) and I make Christian cards with a modern edge. I settled on the name because Jesus’ words in the Bible are printed in red ink, and these cards are my way of sharing Him.”

Why did you create your business?

“My husband and I struggled every year to find Christmas cards that reflected both our faith and our minimalist and modern visual tastes. If we couldn’t find what we were looking for, surely other people were having the same problem. As a designer, I knew it was a problem I could solve. I wanted to make Christian greeting cards that appeal to a younger generation and that are a bit more subtle so that anyone can send a little faith without being overbearing.”

What is the one scripture (or two) that you draw strength from?RLPCo2-small

“The verse I base my business on is 1 Corinthians 10:31: “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” As someone who was never very comfortable with sharing the gospel verbally, the cards and the business are my way of using the gifts He’s given me to share Him with others. This verse for me means that whatever I do, even making cards, I can do it for Him. I’ve also adopted Isaiah 6:8 as a verse for my business: “Here am I. Send me.” Perfect for cards, right? J”

Share the best advice you can share with an entrepreneur?

“I’m sure there are some entrepreneurs who believe in themselves and their business 150 percent from the get-go. I’m not one of them. I’m a quiet introvert who has at times struggled with confidence. Wondered if I’d be better off not putting Bible verses on my cards. Felt like I’d never be one of the big dogs. These are the entrepreneurs I’d like to speak to. The wonderful business strategist I’m working with pointed out this verse to me: “And there we saw the giants and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.” (Numbers 13:33) If you see yourself as small, the world sees you as small. Make yourself an expert in your business, be confident, see yourself as a giant, be a giant.”

Have an interesting tidbit about your business or yourself that you would like to add?

“If you look closely, you can see flashes of my life in my cards. Each of them is personal to me. My popular {not sent from my iPhone} cards prove I’m a techie. The Twitter Christmas cards and Facebook birthday card show you I’m an avid social networker. The “You’re sweet” card features a glass of sweet tea — yep, I’m an original southerner. Many of my cards reflect my friends and their lives as well. I don’t actually drink coffee, but I can appreciate that love has caffeine. I believe that while the Bible is hundreds of years old, it can still be applied to today’s life and times, and I embrace the challenge of finding a corresponding Bible verse for each of my unique cards.”

For more information, visit www.redletterpaperco.com. Want to have your business featured on our bi-monthly Pew Business Spotlight? Send us a email expressing interest to pewnews@aol.com.

Ten things debt-free people do

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By Ahmad Davis
Special to Inside The Pew

People who are debt-free got that way because they operate a littledebt-free different from everyone else. If you want to be debt free, this is a road map for you. “Keep out of debt and owe no man anything, except to love one another;…” Romans 13:8 (AMP)

1. They get help being organized

Paying off debt means knowing what you owe, developing a budget and sticking to it. Debt-free people keep track of their bills, how much they earn, how much they save and how much they invest. They learn from experts and have systems in place to help them tell their money what to do, whether it’s an Excel file or another program.

2. They have a lot less stress

Debt creates stress. I did (a long time ago), and most people around me go into debt to relieve stress, whether it is buying a new car to replace an older one, buy some new electronic, go on a vacation or going back to school to increase your earning potential. No matter the reason, the bill on the other end causes stress. So us “debt-free” people do not create a bill to relieve stress, they pay for it with cash, solve the same problem, but do not have a bill at the end.

3. They use a budgeting system

A budget is simply a way to tell your money what to do instead of just wondering where it went. Debt-Free people use their budget as a system to make sure the most important things always get taken care of first and they invest, save, and have fun on purpose.

4. They pay cash

When you are getting out of debt, you learn how to use cash to manage your impulse areas. After you get out of debt, you use cash to fund your impulse areas.

5. They understand credit

Credit is not evil. It is a short-cut. It is the “Hare” in the tortoise and the Hare story. The person who uses credit is trying to get to the end fast. The problem is that the tortoise won the race every time.

6. They maximize value

I was talking to a relative of mine this weekend and she was wondering if we could find cheaper cuts of steaks in Texas (that is where I live) because of the cattle industry being so close. My response was that we should definitely be able to find a better quality.

Debt-free people are not looking for cheaper products, they are looking for high quality at a better price.

7. They’re more patient

The patience produces higher quality purchases, the higher quality purchases mean less maintenance and upkeep costs, the lower upkeep costs frees up more money to make more high quality purchases.

8. They compare before they buy

The general rule of thumb is that they do not pay full retail. This applies to small things like shoes all the way up to high ticket purchases such as boats, ATV’s, and homes. They will let the high impulse consumers test the market and measure their reviews of products and services to measure value and quality.

9. They’re not materialistic

Debt-free people might like nice, shiny toys but they don’t define themselves by their possessions.

10. They are loyal

Because of the time that is put into finding high quality products and services, once they find a service that meets their standards, they become very loyal patrons. Over time, the debt-free individual starts to occupy their time using high quality products, receiving high quality services at average prices.

Ahmad Davis is a coach with Victory By Design, a firm based in Beaumont, Texas, serving clients locally, nationally and internationally. Ahmad provides solutions for individuals, couples, and businesses who are overwhelmed and stressed financially. Ahmad’s typical clients’ are pastors, single parents, lawyers, couples, doctors, business executives, newlyweds, business owners, and others who want a simple solution with remarkable measurable results. For more information, visit http://www.thebiblicalblueprint.com. To get your questions answered on the Inside The Pew Forum, email Ahmad at coach@thebiblicalblueprint.com.