Thursday, April 15, 2010

Caesar's Rendering

Earlier this year, I took advantage of the graciousness of my employer and used a vacation day (carry-over from 2009) to avoid traveling during a snowstorm. I took advantage of the snow day by filing the appropriate Scott Pearce Family Tax Return documents for 2009. Some observations:

- I have been, and continue to be grateful to God that our government encourages Christian tithing by allowing those monies to be deducted from one's income.

- By giving tax breaks to families who pay for child care, the federal government encourages an activity that weakens families. Tax breaks for child care also make it easier for families to live as two-income families; the increased prevalence of two-income families adds increased financial pressure to families committed to living on one income.

- There are several ways in which Income is qualified as Earned Income or Other on the tax forms. Income that is not earned is certainly not a new phenomenon, but the stigma attached to unduly benefiting from the work/property of others has hardly been lower than it is today.

- Because we wrapped our furnace pipes with insulation in October, we received a "tax break" equivalent to a few pennies. The federal government would like me to believe that it has rewarded my behavior by giving me those few pennies as incentive. Because I am smarter than the federal government thinks I is, I know that the insulation was placed as an act in *gasp* my own self interest. In the form of lower natural gas costs this winter, the insulation saved us the equivalent of a payment on Becca's car. In the form of tax break "incentives" the federal government ensured that we can stock the car with one (1) air freshener.

- I will always strive to "render unto Caesar what is Caesar's" with a submissive and willing spirit, but I will also always fervently pray for and hopefully vote for leaders who will tax me less. Dollar for dollar, I can do more good with my wealth and property than can any government on earth.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

A Toast, An Ode, A Tribute:

To my darling wife, on the occasion of the completion of a year of Motherhood.

I had known you to think of others more highly than yourself, but I did not know selflessness until I had seen you as Mother. Never with such intimacy have I seen the life of one so devoted to the lives of others as yours has been.

I have known your heart to be capable of great love in our romance. What foothills were the heights of affection and adoration previously scaled--and how grand the pinnacles of love and devotion which you have ascended as a mother! If it weren't so strange to compare you to a furry animal, I would deem you my mountain goat of love.

Your commitment to our marriage has not lessened in the year we have shared with our son. In fact, you have daily defied mathematical order. You and I, Love, were one when we were two. Somehow, with a child, we two are still one even as we three have become one.

Sleeplessness and physical exhaustion have not weakened your pursuit of personal holiness. A blonde-haired, blue-eyed hunk has not come between you and the husband of your youth. The toddles of our toddler have not kept you from your quest for domestic dominion.

I have been witness to wonders in this year past. Our son has breathed with his own lungs for one year, he has fed with his own mouth (and how!) for every day of the past 365. We have seen the body, mind, and soul of William Isaiah Pearce grow for these months, and we are richer for it. These are wonders--indeed what wonders!--yet you are more wonderful.