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Toxic algae kills 3 dogs hours after they played in North Carolina pond, owner says

Westlake Legal Group blue-green-algae1 Toxic algae kills 3 dogs hours after they played in North Carolina pond, owner says Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/north-carolina fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/georgia fox-news/health/healthy-living/pet-health fox news fnc/health fnc article 87927817-6d15-591d-896c-5fe851fafb13

Toxic algae killed three dogs in a matter of hours after they played in a North Carolina pond last week, their owner wrote on Facebook.

Melissa Martin of Wilmington wrote that around noon on Thursday her three dogs, Abby, Izzy, and Harpo, “contracted blue green algae poisoning” after swimming in a local pond.

“We are gutted,” she wrote in the post.

“I wish I could do today over. I would give anything to have one more day with them.”

She added, “What started out as a fun night for them has ended in the biggest loss of our lives. We need your prayers.”

DOG BAFFLED BY HAIR CLIP IN VIRAL INSTAGRAM VIDEO

In another Facebook post, Martin wrote that the dogs’ health deteriorated quickly on Thursday. Martin said early Friday morning that she initially thought that her dog Abby had been stung by something.

Her dog Izzy started “seizing,” she wrote, adding that when she had contacted a veterinarian she was told to bring her dogs. She said by the time Izzy arrived, she “was almost lifeless” and “Harpo was just beginning to seize.”

“The Westies were really out of it, constantly seizing and unable to breathe well, so we decided we would let them go together peacefully,” Martin wrote.

“In the process, Harpo started to go down hill soon after.”

She added, “The vet said that he was suffering and his chance of survival with no liver failure and internal bleeding was very low.” She went on to write, “I held him and told him how awesome he was, and reminded him of all the lives he touched. Then we let him go.”

SERVICE DOGS TRAVEL TO EL PASO TO COMFORT VICTIMS AND FIRST RESPONDERS

Martin wrote, “The hardest thing I have ever done is hold these incredible animals and watch their lives slip away.”

She said that her goal since then has been to warn others of the dangers of “this deadly bacteria.”

Some blooms of blue-green algae can produce chemicals toxic to animals and people who drink the untreated water, according to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS). The department added that the algae bloom may turn the water neon green, blue-green or reddish-brown, could cause a bad smell and taste in the water and sometimes forms a foam or scum on the water’s surface.

The algae also could kill fish and can cause skin irritation or breathing irritation in people who get in the water or handle the algae, according to the NCDHHS.

On her Facebook page, Martin shared a post from Morgan Fleming of Marietta, Ga., on Sunday, who said she also lost her dog after she brought her to a lake.

In response to Fleming’s post, Martin wrote, “And here we go again! It’s a traumatic, excruciating death. We are heartbroken for them, and unfortunately, we know how they feel, times three.”

Fleming said she took her dog Arya to a lake on Saturday morning and about 30 minutes later on the drive home, she “noticed her making weird noises and she threw up and pooped in the car.”

She called a veterinarian who told her to bring Arya.

“By this point our girl couldn’t even stand,” Fleming wrote, adding that veterinarians told her Arya was in critical condition so she took her to the emergency room.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“By the time we got there, she was brain dead,” Fleming wrote.

She added, “We lost our fun, loving, and crazy girl to what we can only assume was a lake toxin such as blue green algae.”

Westlake Legal Group blue-green-algae1 Toxic algae kills 3 dogs hours after they played in North Carolina pond, owner says Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/north-carolina fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/georgia fox-news/health/healthy-living/pet-health fox news fnc/health fnc article 87927817-6d15-591d-896c-5fe851fafb13   Westlake Legal Group blue-green-algae1 Toxic algae kills 3 dogs hours after they played in North Carolina pond, owner says Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/north-carolina fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/georgia fox-news/health/healthy-living/pet-health fox news fnc/health fnc article 87927817-6d15-591d-896c-5fe851fafb13

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Toxic algae kills 3 dogs hours after they played in North Carolina pond, owner says

Westlake Legal Group blue-green-algae1 Toxic algae kills 3 dogs hours after they played in North Carolina pond, owner says Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/north-carolina fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/georgia fox-news/health/healthy-living/pet-health fox news fnc/health fnc article 87927817-6d15-591d-896c-5fe851fafb13

Toxic algae killed three dogs in a matter of hours after they played in a North Carolina pond last week, their owner wrote on Facebook.

Melissa Martin of Wilmington wrote that around noon on Thursday her three dogs, Abby, Izzy, and Harpo, “contracted blue green algae poisoning” after swimming in a local pond.

“We are gutted,” she wrote in the post.

“I wish I could do today over. I would give anything to have one more day with them.”

She added, “What started out as a fun night for them has ended in the biggest loss of our lives. We need your prayers.”

DOG BAFFLED BY HAIR CLIP IN VIRAL INSTAGRAM VIDEO

In another Facebook post, Martin wrote that the dogs’ health deteriorated quickly on Thursday. Martin said early Friday morning that she initially thought that her dog Abby had been stung by something.

Her dog Izzy started “seizing,” she wrote, adding that when she had contacted a veterinarian she was told to bring her dogs. She said by the time Izzy arrived, she “was almost lifeless” and “Harpo was just beginning to seize.”

“The Westies were really out of it, constantly seizing and unable to breathe well, so we decided we would let them go together peacefully,” Martin wrote.

“In the process, Harpo started to go down hill soon after.”

She added, “The vet said that he was suffering and his chance of survival with no liver failure and internal bleeding was very low.” She went on to write, “I held him and told him how awesome he was, and reminded him of all the lives he touched. Then we let him go.”

SERVICE DOGS TRAVEL TO EL PASO TO COMFORT VICTIMS AND FIRST RESPONDERS

Martin wrote, “The hardest thing I have ever done is hold these incredible animals and watch their lives slip away.”

She said that her goal since then has been to warn others of the dangers of “this deadly bacteria.”

Some blooms of blue-green algae can produce chemicals toxic to animals and people who drink the untreated water, according to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS). The department added that the algae bloom may turn the water neon green, blue-green or reddish-brown, could cause a bad smell and taste in the water and sometimes forms a foam or scum on the water’s surface.

The algae also could kill fish and can cause skin irritation or breathing irritation in people who get in the water or handle the algae, according to the NCDHHS.

On her Facebook page, Martin shared a post from Morgan Fleming of Marietta, Ga., on Sunday, who said she also lost her dog after she brought her to a lake.

In response to Fleming’s post, Martin wrote, “And here we go again! It’s a traumatic, excruciating death. We are heartbroken for them, and unfortunately, we know how they feel, times three.”

Fleming said she took her dog Arya to a lake on Saturday morning and about 30 minutes later on the drive home, she “noticed her making weird noises and she threw up and pooped in the car.”

She called a veterinarian who told her to bring Arya.

“By this point our girl couldn’t even stand,” Fleming wrote, adding that veterinarians told her Arya was in critical condition so she took her to the emergency room.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“By the time we got there, she was brain dead,” Fleming wrote.

She added, “We lost our fun, loving, and crazy girl to what we can only assume was a lake toxin such as blue green algae.”

Westlake Legal Group blue-green-algae1 Toxic algae kills 3 dogs hours after they played in North Carolina pond, owner says Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/north-carolina fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/georgia fox-news/health/healthy-living/pet-health fox news fnc/health fnc article 87927817-6d15-591d-896c-5fe851fafb13   Westlake Legal Group blue-green-algae1 Toxic algae kills 3 dogs hours after they played in North Carolina pond, owner says Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/north-carolina fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/georgia fox-news/health/healthy-living/pet-health fox news fnc/health fnc article 87927817-6d15-591d-896c-5fe851fafb13

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Guards in Jeffrey Epstein’s jail unit were working substantial overtime shifts before his death, reports say

Correctional officers who worked in a special unit inside the New York City jail that housed Jeffrey Epstein — before his apparent suicide — had worked extreme overtime shifts to compensate for staffing shortages, according to reports Sunday.

The Associated Press cited an unnamed source in a Sunday report that said the Metropolitan Correctional Center’s Special Housing Unit was staffed with a single guard working a fifth straight day of overtime and another who was working mandatory overtime.

Epstein, 66, was found unconscious in his cell Saturday. He later was pronounced dead from an apparent suicide, raising questions as to how the wealthy financier might have been able to kill himself under the nose of staff in the high-security facility.

The correctional center did not immediately return Fox News’ requests for comment.

Westlake Legal Group AP19222555004764 Guards in Jeffrey Epstein's jail unit were working substantial overtime shifts before his death, reports say Louis Casiano fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/crime/sex-crimes fox-news/person/jeffrey-epstein fox news fnc/us fnc ba44e2c2-55c5-5f53-ab30-1d81ff36f6bd article

New York City medical examiner personnel walking on Saturday to the Manhattan Correctional Center where financier Jeffrey Epstein died. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

FORMER FBI OFFICIAL: INDICTMENT OF JEFFREY EPSTEIN IS ‘PLACEHOLDER,’ EXPECT DOZENS MORE CHARGES IN NEAR FUTURE

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner on Sunday performed an autopsy but didn’t release a cause of death.

“Today, a medical examiner performed the autopsy of Jeffrey Epstein,” Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Barbara Sampson said. “The ME’s determination is pending further information at this time. At the request of those representing the decedent, and with the awareness of the federal prosecutor, I allowed a private pathologist (Dr. Michael Baden) to observe the autopsy examination. This is routine practice.”

“My office defers to the involved law enforcement agencies regarding other investigations around this death. Inquiries regarding the determination of the Chief Medical Examiner should be directed towards my office,” the statement continued. In addition to his work as a forensic pathologist, Baden is a Fox News contributor.

The Justice Department was told Epstein would be monitored by a guard every half-hour and would be housed with a cellmate, an official with knowledge into the investigation told the AP.

The cellmate recently had been transferred, allowing Epstein to be housed alone, a violation of jail protocol, officials told The New York Times.

JEFFREY EPSTEIN DEAD: TIMELINE OF SEXUAL ABUSE ALLEGATIONS AND RELATED LEGAL CASES

The well-connected multimillionaire was being held on child sex trafficking charges. Prosecutors said he sexually abused dozens of young girls in his New York and Florida residences between 2002 and 2005.

He pleaded not guilty and faced up to 45 years in prison. Epstein had been placed on suicide watch after he was found last month with bruising on his neck, but he was taken off the watch at the end of July.

Former jail warden Cameron Lindsay told the paper officials made a series of mistakes in Epstein’s case. He said the warden at MCC shouldn’t have taken him off suicide watch, even if the prison’s chief psychologist had recommended doing so.

“A psychologist is going to think one way, but a warden needs to think a different way,” he said. “You have to take the conservative, safe route and keep an individual like this on suicide watch.”

JEFFREY EPSTEIN’S ALLEGED SEX TRAFFICKING INVOLVED LOCATIONS IN NY, VIRGIN ISLANDS, FLORIDA, NM RANCH: ATTORNEY

Epstein’s death came a day after 2,000 pages of documents were released related to a since-settled lawsuit against Epstein’s ex-girlfriend by Virginia Giuffre, one of Epstein’s accusers. The records contain graphic allegations against Epstein, as well as the transcript of a 2016 deposition in which he repeatedly refused to answer questions to avoid incriminating himself.

Attorney General William Barr called for an investigation into Epstein’s death, saying it “raises serious questions that must be answered.”

Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse, a Republican member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, wrote Saturday in a scathing letter to Barr that “heads must roll” after the incident.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

“Every single person in the Justice Department — from your Main Justice headquarters staff all the way to the night-shift jailer — knew that this man was a suicide risk, and that his dark secrets couldn’t be allowed to die with him,” Sasse wrote.

Before his legal troubles, Epstein led a life of extraordinary luxury that drew powerful people into his orbit. He socialized with princes and presidents and lived on a 100-acre private Caribbean island and one of the biggest mansions in New York.

Fox News’ Cecilia Duffy and The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

Westlake Legal Group AP19223094561165 Guards in Jeffrey Epstein's jail unit were working substantial overtime shifts before his death, reports say Louis Casiano fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/crime/sex-crimes fox-news/person/jeffrey-epstein fox news fnc/us fnc ba44e2c2-55c5-5f53-ab30-1d81ff36f6bd article   Westlake Legal Group AP19223094561165 Guards in Jeffrey Epstein's jail unit were working substantial overtime shifts before his death, reports say Louis Casiano fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/crime/sex-crimes fox-news/person/jeffrey-epstein fox news fnc/us fnc ba44e2c2-55c5-5f53-ab30-1d81ff36f6bd article

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Wanted Tennessee inmate was caught after being spotted rifling through strangers’ refrigerator

A Tennessee convict who sparked a five-day manhunt following his prison escape and alleged murder of a correctional administrator last week was captured after home surveillance video caught him rifling through a married couple’s refrigerator at their home, investigators and the pair said Sunday.

Curtis Watson surrendered without incident several hours after law enforcement received a tip about his whereabouts in the West Tennessee town of Henning. Hundreds of law enforcement personnel converged near a soybean field where they took a disheveled Watson wearing camouflage overalls into custody after a ground and air search, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Director David Rausch said at a Sunday news conference.

“The pressure they put on Watson while he was on the run was absolutely critical,” Rausch said.

CANADIAN KILLER FUGITIVES’ TRAIL OF CLUES: BILLOWING SMOKE, SARDINE CANS, SLEEPING BAG HELPED END MANHUNT

The field was located 10 miles from the West Tennessee State Penitentiary where Watson made his Aug. 7 escape.

Harvey Taylor said he and his wife Ann were asleep in their home around 3:30 a.m. when they were awakened by their outdoor security alarm. When they looked at the video system, they spotted a man going through their refrigerator.

They called police after recognizing Watson from news coverage surrounding his escape.

“Once he closed the left side of the refrigerator door, my wife could his face… she said, ‘That’s him, that’s him,’ Taylor said. Watson was captured around 11 a.m.

An intense search for the 44-year-old started after he escaped from prison during his daily lawn-mowing detail. He had been serving a 15-year sentence for aggravated kidnapping. He illegally confined his wife while using an aluminum baseball bat in July 2012, court documents showed. His sentence began in 2013 and was set to expire in 2025, officials said.

Westlake Legal Group 6bbfce75-Capture Wanted Tennessee inmate was caught after being spotted rifling through strangers' refrigerator Louis Casiano fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/tennessee fox-news/us/crime/robbery-theft fox-news/us/crime/manhunt fox-news/us/crime/homicide fox news fnc/us fnc article 01d80455-1f6d-5396-bc1a-016ae9b51f7c

Curtis Watson being taken into custody after five days on the run following his prison escape.  (Tennessee Bureau of Investigation)

Around 11 a.m. on the morning of Watson’s escape, prison officials said they realized employee Debra Johnson was missing after she didn’t report to work.

Johnson, 64, was found dead soon afterward in her home on the prison grounds. Investigators said she was sexually assaulted and strangled to death. Correctional officers reported they saw Watson riding a golf cart at Johnson’s house the morning she died.

Johnson worked for the Tennessee Department of Corrections (TDOC) for 38 years in various roles that included correctional sergeant, deputy warden and warden. She was the first TDOC employee to be killed in 15 years, The Commercial Appeal in Memphis reported.

MANHUNT FOR ESCAPED TENNESSEE INMATE INTENSIFIES AS STATE ISSUES RARE BLUE ALERT

Following his arrest, Watson was taken to a hospital, officials said. He had mosquito bites and his feet were in bad shape, but had no serious injuries.

“He was obviously weathered from his time in the outside,” Rausch said.

Watson’s daughter, Harley Pole, thanked law enforcement in a statement issued shortly after her father was captured.

“The family of Curtis Watson would like to extend their deepest and most heartfelt sympathies to the family of Ms Debra Johnson,” Pole said.

Watson faced new charges of first-degree murder, aggravated sexual battery, aggravated burglary and escaping from prison. Prosecutors were set to determine whether they’d seek the death penalty, Lauderdale County District Attorney Mark Davidson said.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

“I can assure you that our office will be resolved to see that he is put back where he can never escape again and harm anybody in our communities,” Davidson added.

An arraignment is expected later this week.

Westlake Legal Group AP19223595078578 Wanted Tennessee inmate was caught after being spotted rifling through strangers' refrigerator Louis Casiano fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/tennessee fox-news/us/crime/robbery-theft fox-news/us/crime/manhunt fox-news/us/crime/homicide fox news fnc/us fnc article 01d80455-1f6d-5396-bc1a-016ae9b51f7c   Westlake Legal Group AP19223595078578 Wanted Tennessee inmate was caught after being spotted rifling through strangers' refrigerator Louis Casiano fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/tennessee fox-news/us/crime/robbery-theft fox-news/us/crime/manhunt fox-news/us/crime/homicide fox news fnc/us fnc article 01d80455-1f6d-5396-bc1a-016ae9b51f7c

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Trump in Twitter battle with Scaramucci, saying he’d do anything to stay in spotlight

Westlake Legal Group Scaramucci-split Trump in Twitter battle with Scaramucci, saying he'd do anything to stay in spotlight Nick Givas fox-news/shows/fox-report-weekend fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 60f49892-8a39-55ea-8d08-c2689823afa3

President Donald Trump hit back against his former White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci on Saturday and accused him of warping the facts during TV appearances to stay in the public spotlight, but Scaramucci himself later fought back.

“Anthony Scaramucci, who was quickly terminated (11 days) from a position that he was totally incapable of handling, now seems to do nothing but television as the all-time expert on ‘President Trump.’ Like many other so-called television experts, he knows very little about me,” Trump wrote.

“Other than the fact that this Administration has probably done more than any other Administration in its first 2 1/2 years of existence. Anthony, who would do anything to come back in, should remember the only reason he is on TV, and it’s not for being the Mooch!”

SCARAMUCCI SAYS EL PASO, DAYTON VISITS WERE ‘CATASTROPHE’ FOR TRUMP, CALLS OUT WH ‘COWARDS’ FOR LEAKING

Scaramucci responded the next day and said he’s always supported the president, but took issue with Trump’s divisive language. He also accused the president of frequently turning against his allies.

More from Media 

“For the last 3 years I have fully supported this President,” he wrote on Sunday. “Recently he has said things that divide the country in a way that is unacceptable. So I didn’t pass the 100% litmus test. Eventually he turns on everyone and soon it will be you and then the entire country.”

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Scaramucci called Trump’s visit to El Paso, Texas, a “catastrophe” this past Thursday during an interview with MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, and predicted Trump would eventually respond via Twitter.

“He probably would be mad at somebody for saying that. Maybe he’ll tweet something negative about somebody for saying he didn’t do well, but facts are he did not do well on the trip because if the trip is being made about him and not the demonstration of compassion and love and caring and empathy for those people, then it becomes a catastrophe for him, the administration, and it’s also a bad reflection on the country,” he said.

Fox News’ David Montanaro contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Scaramucci-split Trump in Twitter battle with Scaramucci, saying he'd do anything to stay in spotlight Nick Givas fox-news/shows/fox-report-weekend fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 60f49892-8a39-55ea-8d08-c2689823afa3   Westlake Legal Group Scaramucci-split Trump in Twitter battle with Scaramucci, saying he'd do anything to stay in spotlight Nick Givas fox-news/shows/fox-report-weekend fox-news/politics/executive/white-house fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media/fox-news-flash fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 60f49892-8a39-55ea-8d08-c2689823afa3

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Rep. Al Green wants Trump impeached to help shrink president’s 2020 donor list

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6056127617001_6056134581001-vs Rep. Al Green wants Trump impeached to help shrink president's 2020 donor list Nick Givas fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 7df23b6e-5f87-552c-9eec-9098d194582f

Anti-Trump Rep. Al Green, D-Texas, said House Democrats should impeach the president to curb his political donor list and stifle his campaign’s fundraising efforts ahead of 2020.

Green appeared on MSNBC’s “Weekends with Alex Witt” on Sunday and cited a poll claiming 51 percent of voters saw Trump as racist. He also said that even if Trump isn’t convicted in the Senate, the process would serve to hurt his campaign coffers.

“Fifty-one percent of the American public believes that the president is a racist,” he said. “Fifty-one percent… It is one thing to want to defeat the president at the polls, but it’s another thing to understand that we have to impeach the philosophy that he’s perpetrating upon society. If we impeach the philosophy, we take on a broader… threat to society than just defeating him at the polls.”

In a Quinnipiac poll released late last month, 51 percent of voters said President Trump was racist while 45 percent said he was not.

Green added, “If he is not defeated in the Senate, he will still run as an impeached president and there will be a good many people who won’t want to hold fundraisers with him — a good many people who won’t want to be in his company because he will become persona non grata to a good many of these wealthy people who are benefitting from his bigotry.”

TRUMP 2020 SPOKESWOMAN: JOAQUIN CASTRO’S DOXXING ONLY EMBOLDNED TRUMP DONORS

Green’s comments came after Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, was highly criticized for publishing a list of Trump donors who lived and worked in El Paso, following the mass shooting at a Walmart there. Trump campaign spokeswoman Kayleigh McEnany said actions like this have served only to embolden Trump donors and also have helped create new ones.

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“We have historic fundraising. We expect that to continue,” she said Wednesday on “Outnumbered Overtime.”

“One donor who was targeted, who was on that list, anonymously told The Daily Caller, this is actually having the reverse impact. It is emboldening our donors.”

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6056127617001_6056134581001-vs Rep. Al Green wants Trump impeached to help shrink president's 2020 donor list Nick Givas fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 7df23b6e-5f87-552c-9eec-9098d194582f   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6056127617001_6056134581001-vs Rep. Al Green wants Trump impeached to help shrink president's 2020 donor list Nick Givas fox-news/politics/house-of-representatives/democrats fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 7df23b6e-5f87-552c-9eec-9098d194582f

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Christen Limbaugh Bloom: 6 biblical teachings for people-pleasers to live by

Westlake Legal Group e5e5aca3ed0d5035890f6a706700822a-1 Christen Limbaugh Bloom: 6 biblical teachings for people-pleasers to live by fox-news/us/religion/christianity fox-news/us/religion fox-news/opinion fox-news/faith-values fox news fnc/opinion fnc Christen Limbaugh Bloom article ae2544bb-b1e7-551d-be20-cabf4347d694

One of my guilty pleasures is taking online personality quizzes and reading articles about personality types and the theories about what motivates people in each category. I’ve taken countless quizzes, but one common theme in all of them is that I have a deep desire to feel loved and appreciated by others. This quality, both in myself and in other people, often has a tendency to cause a pattern of people-pleasing. In best-case scenarios, the craving for love can lead to sincere empathy for others. But unfortunately it can also lead to behaviors that don’t always line up with Jesus’ teachings.

I’ve found comfort in discovering I am not alone in my people-pleasing ways. For those of you who fall into this category, here is what I’ve learned about how to counter the negative effects of the desire to be loved by other people.

1. Stop putting your value in the approval of others. Instead, seek God’s approval

PAUL BATURA: WHAT JUSTIN BIEBER’S VERY PERSONAL JOURNEY CAN TEACH ALL OF US (EVEN YOU NON-BELIEBERS)

The story of two sisters named Mary and Martha in the book of Luke perfectly demonstrates how twisted our priorities are on earth compared to the Kingdom of Heaven. Martha was frantically trying to entertain guests while her sister simply sat at the feet of Jesus, soaking up His presence. When Martha told Jesus to rebuke her sister for not helping her host, Jesus replied, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed — or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:38-42)

It’s important to remember that while we might not always be praised here on earth for our devotion to Christ, Jesus is watching us and we will be rewarded in Heaven for seeking His approval rather than the world’s. In order to value God’s approval above others, we must:

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2. Put God first

“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:33)

Jesus taught that even our most essential needs like food and shelter are not as important as the presence of God in our lives. If we seek God’s face first and foremost, He will provide all of our other needs, especially our need to feel loved and comforted.

3. Stand Firm in Your Beliefs when you feel pressured to follow the crowd

“As we mature to the full measure of the stature of Christ. Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching” (Ephesians 4:13-14)

When people in our lives behave in ways that challenge our Christian beliefs, it’s crucial for us to stand firm in what we know to be right and true rather than giving in to the temptation to be liked at all costs. In order to have confidence in our faith, we must:

4. Meditate and have God’s truth on our hearts so we can use it as the standard against the tests of life

“Blessed is the one … whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night.” (Psalm 1:2)

Applying God’s truth to any and every situation is the key to living a fruitful and peace-filled life, especially when we face conflict. Avoiding conflict is a major motivator for people-pleasers. However, unfortunately, because we live in a fallen world there will inevitably be times when conflict does arise. When it does, rather than avoiding the problem, we should:

5. Look to Jesus as the example for how resolve conflicts

Jesus said, “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.” (Matthew 18:15)

Sometimes as Christians, we have to do the hard thing and rebuke our friends if they’re behaving in a way that’s detrimental to their spiritual growth. In these times we should ask Jesus for His discernment, strength, and most of all, love in order to handle these situations properly.

Finally,

6. Learn to channel your desire to please others into finding opportunities to show them the love of Christ

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“Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” (Colossians 4:5-6)

Like I said, people-pleasing isn’t always a bad thing. God wants us to love our neighbors as ourselves and to live in peace. When we learn to apply these Biblical teachings to our lives, God has the power to take the best aspects of our personalities and use them for His glory.

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Westlake Legal Group e5e5aca3ed0d5035890f6a706700822a-1 Christen Limbaugh Bloom: 6 biblical teachings for people-pleasers to live by fox-news/us/religion/christianity fox-news/us/religion fox-news/opinion fox-news/faith-values fox news fnc/opinion fnc Christen Limbaugh Bloom article ae2544bb-b1e7-551d-be20-cabf4347d694   Westlake Legal Group e5e5aca3ed0d5035890f6a706700822a-1 Christen Limbaugh Bloom: 6 biblical teachings for people-pleasers to live by fox-news/us/religion/christianity fox-news/us/religion fox-news/opinion fox-news/faith-values fox news fnc/opinion fnc Christen Limbaugh Bloom article ae2544bb-b1e7-551d-be20-cabf4347d694

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Paul Batura: Back-to-school: How a strange, wonderful teacher changed the course of my life

Westlake Legal Group classroom-iStock Paul Batura: Back-to-school: How a strange, wonderful teacher changed the course of my life Paul Batura fox-news/us/education fox-news/opinion fox-news/faith-values fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 3c8529ae-08ee-5424-b5c6-d2a9428297f1

To the dismay of most children and the delight of many parents, students are headed back to the classroom this month and next, an annual rite of seasonal transition.

I always met the beginning of the new school year with mixed emotion. Summer represented everything I loved, including the pace and freedom of warm, carefree days. But there was also something comforting, familiar and even exciting about the rhythm of returning to school, meeting up with old and new friends and climbing the academic ladder.

“Back to School” displays have been in stores since late June, an obscene gesture courtesy of the retail gods. Each time I see them, my mind wanders back to my elementary and high school years. Back then, we didn’t buy our supplies in a mega store or from Amazon, of course. Howie’s candy store on Merrick Road in Baldwin on Long Island had everything you needed, from pens and pencils to loose leaf paper, Elmer’s Glue and those trusty Trapper Keeper binders.

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But my memories of school go well beyond the simple supplies we bought each September.  Instead, I tend to park on the many teachers I had over the years, including my first one in kindergarten (Mrs. Laventrosser) and my first teacher crush in the 3rd grade (Mrs. Campbell) — and the dozens in between, including Sisters Rosemary, Maria and the dignified Mrs. Pesce, who at one time wore white gloves in the classroom — “because that’s what a lady does.”  All of these great people touched my life in ways big and small.

It’s impossible to overstate the value of a good teacher in a child’s life — individuals who awaken enthusiasm, unlock passions and unleash hidden gifts — all for minimal pay, no less.

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Yet there’s one teacher who stands taller than all the rest for me. His name is Russ Josephs, our elementary school gym teacher.

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As a kid, “Mr. Russ” as we called him back then, always struck me as a strange man. “Eccentric,” my mother would counter, smiling as she spoke. “He’s just wonderfully eccentric.”

In his late 20s, “Mr. Russ” drove a dilapidated 1974 blue Ford Pinto. The floorboards were rotted out and at red lights you could see him tapping his foot on the pavement, keeping beat with the music on the radio. He had a white hobby horse strapped to the roof, and he had taped a message on the back window: “Warning! Exploding Gas Tank!” — a wry nod to Ford’s infamous engineering malfunction.

We all loved Mr. Russ. In a school staffed primarily by clergy, he stood out in more ways than one. His physical education and health classes were great fun and he was constantly cracking jokes. He once convinced us that he had a wife and three kids — but we later found out the pictures he was showing as proof had come with his new wallet.

But Russ Josephs’ influence on me wasn’t limited to the classroom or gym. Because it was a more innocent time, his invitations to take us to baseball and hockey games never raised any red flags. Sadly, it wouldn’t be appropriate for single teachers to do that today. We paid our own way, but he provided the transportation and supervision. On the way home, we’d stop at White Castle for “belly bombers” and more laughs.

When Russ got married, a whole gang of us went to his wedding. When the pastor asked if anyone objected to the pending union, he peered over his shoulder with raised eyebrows. It brought the house down.

With his good-natured and cheerful temperament, Russ regularly emitted a zest and love of life. It was contagious. A marathon runner, he often discussed the importance of cultivating “lifetime fitness” — finding activities that you enjoyed and that you could keep doing well into adulthood.

With him as a role model, I started running in high school — first to lose weight and later with the goal of finishing a 26.2-mile race, which I eventually accomplished. We often ran together, and in the midst of those long runs, talked about everything, including career goals, relationships — and faith. Russ’ familiarity with the scriptures helped deepen my own devotion to God. In the process, he became a mentor and a great friend.

Russ’ eccentricity taught me that it’s okay to be different, to go against the grain, to be your own man in a world full of copycats. His extroverted nature also helped me come out of my shell and become more comfortable in a room full of strangers.

The full impact and influence of a good teacher isn’t often fully appreciated until years later when you ponder the past and connect the dots to the present day. Just try and imagine your life without your favorite one. Looking back, I can’t fathom where I would be had Russ not taken an interest in me and gently guided me through such formative years.

If you can, I would encourage you to reach out to these heroes of your yesterdays. It would mean a lot to them to know how much they meant to you.

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Our family was vacationing last week in Maine and we stopped in to see Russ and his wife, Nancy, who own a classic old cottage on pristine China Lake. Their two kids are grown, and he’s retired now after a 40-year career. True to form, Russ warmly greeted us and proceeded to pour into our boys, even taking them tubing on the lake, laughing all the way.

So as the new school year kicks off, never underestimate the power of our nation’s teachers not only to educate but also to enlighten and elevate the next generation — and even well beyond.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY PAUL BATURA

Westlake Legal Group classroom-iStock Paul Batura: Back-to-school: How a strange, wonderful teacher changed the course of my life Paul Batura fox-news/us/education fox-news/opinion fox-news/faith-values fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 3c8529ae-08ee-5424-b5c6-d2a9428297f1   Westlake Legal Group classroom-iStock Paul Batura: Back-to-school: How a strange, wonderful teacher changed the course of my life Paul Batura fox-news/us/education fox-news/opinion fox-news/faith-values fox news fnc/opinion fnc article 3c8529ae-08ee-5424-b5c6-d2a9428297f1

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‘Terrorists’ linked to murder of young Israeli soldier in West Bank arrested, IDF announces

Two “terrorists” accused of murdering a 19-year-old off-duty soldier in the West Bank last week have been arrested, the Israeli military announced on Saturday.

The Israel Defense Forces tweeted, “We have found the terror squad that murdered IDF soldier Cpl. Dvir Sorek.”

Sorek was found dead with stab wounds Thursday outside a settlement in the Gush Etzion region, which is near the West Bank city of Hebron, the military said.

Westlake Legal Group Dvir-Sorek 'Terrorists' linked to murder of young Israeli soldier in West Bank arrested, IDF announces Talia Kaplan fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox news fnc/world fnc article 25785d48-5284-5c19-b211-140dea2c6d86

IDF soldier Cpl. Dvir Sorek was found dead with stab wounds outside a settlement in the Gush Etzion region, the military said. (Israel Defense Forces)

His body turned up on the side of a road near a pre-military Jewish seminary where he’d been a student; he was neither armed nor in uniform.

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“In an operation—together with Israeli security forces—we located and arrested the 2 terrorists suspected to have committed the attack,” the IDF wrote in the tweet on Saturday, which included a photo of an arrest and another picture of the operation in progress.

“We will continue in our fight against terror,” the tweet went on to say.

The suspects reportedly were linked to a Palestinian terror cell. At least two in that group were brothers from Hebron, Israel’s Channel 13 TV reported. There was no immediate Palestinian comment.

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The army said in a statement that the car the militants used in the attack was seized.

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu denounced the killing as a terror attack last week.

In another tweet posted on Saturday, Netanyahu wrote that he commended the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) and security forces who captured the suspects within 48 hours.

“In the last few years our forces put their hands on all the Palestinian murderers that attacked Israelis and today they did it again,” he wrote in the tweet. “We will continue to fight terrorism intensely on all fronts.”

The Islamic militant group Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, accused the Palestinian Authority, its rival in the West Bank, of cooperating with Israel to identify the militants behind the murder.

Hamas celebrated the murder last week writing in a statement, “We salute the hero fighters, sons of our people, who carried out the heroic operation which killed a soldier of the occupation army.”

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The death of the young soldier came just over a month before Israel’s parliamentary elections, with Netanyahu’s right-wing allies calling for further West Bank settlement construction and a tough response.

Fox News’ Lukas Mikelionis and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group IDF-Split 'Terrorists' linked to murder of young Israeli soldier in West Bank arrested, IDF announces Talia Kaplan fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox news fnc/world fnc article 25785d48-5284-5c19-b211-140dea2c6d86   Westlake Legal Group IDF-Split 'Terrorists' linked to murder of young Israeli soldier in West Bank arrested, IDF announces Talia Kaplan fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox news fnc/world fnc article 25785d48-5284-5c19-b211-140dea2c6d86

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Atlanta Braves pitcher Sean Newcomb causes fire extinguisher mess after kicking trash can

Atlanta Braves relief pitcher Sean Newcomb had a slight meltdown in the team’s clubhouse on Saturday night, triggering a chain reaction that set off a fire extinguisher after their loss to the Miami Marlins.

Newcomb, 26, kicked a metal garbage can in frustration after giving up the winning run in the 10th inning. The garbage can hit a fire extinguisher hanging on the tunnel wall between the dugout and clubhouse.

The extinguisher then started to spew chemical spray as a large fan helped it send smoke and dust flying through the air, which temporarily blocked the Braves from entering the clubhouse before the team’s final game in Miami during their four-game series.

Westlake Legal Group RT-Sean-Newcomb Atlanta Braves pitcher Sean Newcomb causes fire extinguisher mess after kicking trash can fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/florida fox-news/sports/mlb/miami-marlins fox-news/sports/mlb/atlanta-braves fox-news/odd-news fox news fnc/sports fnc David Aaro article 4874a4b3-347b-5543-b0fb-476dcd52c4fd

Atlanta Braves relief pitcher Sean Newcomb kicked a garbage can in frustration following a loss against Miami, setting off a series of events near the team’s clubhouse. (Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports, File)

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A crew had to clean up the mess Sunday morning. One worker said Newcomb apologized and offered to pay for any damages, The Associated Press reported.

The Braves had led 6-2 going into the bottom of the ninth inning before the Marlins, who have the worst record in the National League, rallied to score four runs and send the game into extra innings. Newcomb entered the game in the 10th inning.

His postgame frustration seemed to stem from an errant pickoff attempt that hit off the glove of first baseman Freddie Freeman, allowing outfielder Harold Ramirez to advance from first to third base. A sacrifice fly by third baseman Martín Prado scored Ramirez and won the game for Miami.

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Newcomb has had an ERA of 2.99 this season, nearly one point less than his total of 3.90 in 2018.

In June of this year, Newcomb was involved in a scary scene after a 102-mile-per-hour line drive struck him in the back of the head. He walked it off under his own power and managed to play again 10 days later.

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The Braves (70-50) are currently first in the NL East.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group RT-Sean-Newcomb Atlanta Braves pitcher Sean Newcomb causes fire extinguisher mess after kicking trash can fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/florida fox-news/sports/mlb/miami-marlins fox-news/sports/mlb/atlanta-braves fox-news/odd-news fox news fnc/sports fnc David Aaro article 4874a4b3-347b-5543-b0fb-476dcd52c4fd   Westlake Legal Group RT-Sean-Newcomb Atlanta Braves pitcher Sean Newcomb causes fire extinguisher mess after kicking trash can fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/florida fox-news/sports/mlb/miami-marlins fox-news/sports/mlb/atlanta-braves fox-news/odd-news fox news fnc/sports fnc David Aaro article 4874a4b3-347b-5543-b0fb-476dcd52c4fd

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