Meet Michael Snyder | IOM Contributing Writer
My name is Michael and I am just a regular guy who is married to one of the most wonderful women in the world. I have an undergraduate degree in Commerce from the University of Virginia and I have a law degree from the University of Florida law school. I also have an LLM from the University of Florida law school. I once worked for some of the largest law firms in Washington D.C., but now I mostly focus on trying to make a difference in the world. I am a very strong Christian, and my wife and I believe that God is going to do great things with this generation. - Michael

Michael is a well published author on topics related to the economy, family and faith - all from a Biblical perspective. We welcome him to our team. - Dr. Phinney

Today's Video | Facts Don't Care About Your Feelings | Shapiro
Why does it seem as if America's college campuses have totally lost it? Well, because they have. In short, feelings now rule facts, and victims are heroes. But here's a fact: If you're a college student in the United States, you're almost certainly NOT a victim. Ben Shapiro explains why.

IM Worldview Institute is a registered educator for PragerU.

Today's Article | IM Lonely | Michael Snyder
What in the world has happened to us? Once upon a time, America was made up of tightly-knit communities that were united by family, faith and patriotism, but now we are more isolated than ever before. Of course one of the biggest reasons for this is the fact that we are all spending countless hours staring at screens instead of interacting with real people, and this is something that I covered  in a previous article . However, our fundamental beliefs are also significantly shaping how we behave. For the past couple of generations, we have de-emphasized family, faith and patriotism as a nation, and instead we have become an extremely “me-centered” society that is primarily focused on doing whatever makes ourselves happy in the moment. But this single-minded pursuit of individual happiness has resulted in much of the country being perpetually mired in loneliness, depression and/or addiction.

When you look at the numbers, they truly are startling. For example, a recent survey that was conducted by Cigna found that almost half of all Americans  feel lonely

Nearly half of Americans are lonely, according to  a survey of 20,000 people  across America by Cigna, which used the well-regarded UCLA Loneliness Scale to measure responses. Indeed 46% said they sometimes or always feel alone and 47% say they sometimes or always feel left out.

And other surveys have produced numbers that are even more alarming. A Harris Poll that was conducted a few years ago actually discovered that  72 percent  of all Americans “experience loneliness”…

The survey of more than 2,000 Americans conducted by the Harris Poll last month on behalf of the American Osteopathic Association, showed that almost three-quarters (72 percent) of Americans experience loneliness. And for many, it’s not just a once-in-a-while occurrence — one-third said they feel lonely at least once a week.

Of course this is commonly known as “the happiest time of the year”, but for many it just magnifies their loneliness.

People see love, warmth and community modeled in television commercials and in Hallmark movies, and they assume that most people out there must be living lives like that.

Sadly, that is not true at all. What we see on our televisions are echoes of the way that America used to be, and many of us would love to see that type of culture make a roaring comeback.

But for now, America is a very, very lonely place, and this reality is reflected in a song that was just released  by one of our most popular pop singers

Mabel, the singer behind the hit “Don’t Call Me Up,” has a new track for those who  struggle with loneliness  during the holidays.

Titled “Loneliest Time of Year,” Mabel captured how for some people, the holidays can heighten feelings like loneliness, loss and depression. In the song, released Friday, she sings lines like, “Sorry I’m not so merry/But I feel like this yearly/Christmas time isn’t my vibe/Brings no joy into my life” and “If I’m feeling lonely/I can’t be the only one.”

Yes, millions of American families will gather during the holidays, but way too many of those gatherings are filled with bitterness, resentment, strife and discord.

In fact, another new survey has found that the average American only needs 3 hours and 54 minutes  “before they start to feel sick of their families”

The holidays are supposed to be a time to  come together with family  and celebrate, but a new survey finds that most Americans can barely get through an evening with their family before needing a break. A total of 2,000 Americans who usually travel to visit family during the holidays took part in the research, and 75% say they will inevitably need to get away from their relatives and indulge in some much needed “me time.”

In fact, it only takes respondents an average of three hours and 54 minutes before they start to feel sick of their families.

This isn’t how it is supposed to be.

We were created to love and to be loved. And when you remove love from the equation, people become very miserable quite rapidly.

In America today, “deaths of despair” are happening at the highest rate in all of U.S. history. The following information comes directly  from the United States Congress Joint Economic Committee

Anne Case and Angus Deaton famously  chronicled  a dramatic rise among middle-aged non-Hispanic whites since 1999 in “deaths of despair”—deaths by suicide, drug and alcohol poisoning, and alcoholic liver disease and cirrhosis. 1  The Social Capital Project has extended Case and Deaton’s research to cover the full American population as far back as available data permit: to 1900 in some cases, and to 1959 or 1968 in others. We present here a snapshot of the long-term trends in deaths of despair. We also attach our  full dataset  for use in future research, including results broken down by age, sex, and race.

Mortality from deaths of despair far surpasses anything seen in America since the dawn of the 20th century. (The trend for middle-aged whites reveals a more dramatic rise but only goes back continuously to 1959.) The recent increase has primarily been driven by an unprecedented epidemic of drug overdoses, but even excluding those deaths, the combined mortality rate from suicides and alcohol-related deaths is higher than at any point in more than 100 years.

So it would appear that our very unhappy nation is rapidly becoming even unhappier.

And it doesn’t take a genius to figure out what this is happening.

As a society, we decided that marriage wasn’t important. So now we have one of the lowest marriage rates and one of the highest divorce rates in the entire world.

As a society, we decided that children weren’t important. So now our birth rate has dropped below replacement level and a third of all U.S. children live in a home without a father.

As a society, we decided that patriotism wasn’t important. So now the American flag is being banned by some schools as a “divisive symbol” and most of our young people have never even read the entire U.S. Constitution.

As a society, we decided that God wasn’t important. So now just about every form of evil that you can possibly imagine is exploding in our society, and we are literally on a path that leads  to national suicide .

If you feel lonely, miserable or depressed this holiday season, I would definitely encourage you to get my latest book entitled  “Living A Life That Really Matters” . It is filled with very practical advice that will enable you to start turning things around immediately. But even more importantly, reach out to those that you love during this holiday season.

Life is way too short to live it alone.

Society would have us believe that those that have the most money are the most “successful”. But that is not true at all. In reality, those that love the most are really the most “successful”, and so let us endeavor to be people of great love.

Today's Editorial Comment |Greg Cleland
We spend our time on social media & watch television shows where people leading rich, full lives. Then we compare ourselves to others resulting in a self-centered, neurotic existence trapped in our thought life. We insulate ourselves by “wearing masks,” guarding ourselves by living in isolation. While also engaging in self-destructive behaviors to off-set self-destructive emotions. Only serving to reinforce what we think and believe about ourselves.

We sow worry, doubt, fear, insecurity & self-destructive behavior into our living spaces. We reap the consequences resulting in a “vortex” or self-destructive loop in our thought life. The consequences can be devastating. Even our attempts to free ourselves from what we are experiencing, to the exclusion of God, only serve to strengthen the approach which gave birth to what we are experiencing. A life of self-dependency.
We find ourselves chasing after an emotional state of existence, striving to recapture & sustain something which is unsustainable. Resulting in a materialistic existence in an attempt to find true & lasting inner peace, contentment & fulfillment through self-effort. A godless approach to living which is unsustainable. Welcome to our post-modern / post-truth “world.” Where experience determines the basis of self-reasoning to the exclusion of the word of God, objective truth as a means of establishing us in Ultimate Reality - God Himself. The One who is our Creator, Sustainer, Provider & Lover of our souls. The cause which produces the effect of worry, doubt, fear & insecurity.
If we don’t first have God in our hearts we cannot possess & give to others true and lasting love, joy and peace. Thus we reap what we sow resulting in what we are experiencing. A life of self-dependency. God help us!
“Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matt. 11:28-30)
In a world committed to self-empowerment, self-management, and self-interpretation, a Biblical worldview is critical. Our Christ-as-Life (CAL) Political Series will address the top political talking points and cultural trends. Learn more.  
IM Worldview Online School is a registered educational partner with PragerU.
Partnership Link | Michael T. Snyder