April 22 is celebrated as Earth Day. People celebrate this day as a day to remember the Earth, a day to consider the ways to keep the earth healthy and protect it from pollution in all its forms. The ocean is filled with garbage and filth, killing off species of ocean animals. The skies are filled with pollutants, making it hard to breathe, and destroying plant and animal life. Because of the numbers of people in cities, there is a light pollution that prevents us from seeing the stars and the wonders of the heavens. All of this is caused by humans.
Some claim the melting of the ice caps and warming of the earth is also human caused. Perhaps, though ice melting and refreezing has been one of the natural cycles of the earth. Add to that the, also natural, recent increase in volcanic activity.
I think the Earth cries at its pollutants, all of these I’ve mentioned, and others. Consider the pollutants of evil pervading the earth. Violence, wars, abortions, selfishness, pornography, and calling good evil and evil good.
We need to be more careful of the ways we manage our resources, throw away less, work to keep the pollutants out of the earth, water, and air. Each of us, in our own understanding of God, need to return to Him, become obedient to His laws, and work to live better lives.
We cannot force others to live by our standards, but we can live the best lives we know how. Perhaps living well will encourage others to follow our examples. I think of the lives Eve and Adam lived, trying always to be obedient to the laws of Jehovah. They taught their children, and worked to help them understand. The battle for righteousness over evil continues. Until it is won, we must choose, in every way we can, to cleanse the earth of the pollutants of mind and soul, as well as the filth that destroys the physical earth.
What can you do to cleanse the earth of its pollutions? How can you be a better example for others, and encourage clean living?
We had an interesting month in January. It was colder than most in our neighborhood, and colder for many of my friends in other places in the west.
The air has been cold and clear here in Southern Nevada. Snow covers the tops of our mountains. Skiers and snowboarders love the 117” of snow. We in the west are enjoying a break from a series of storms. We had nice rain fall from three storms, one after the other in the past weeks. Our parched earth soaked in the mostly gentle rains.
As usual, a few people had to be rescued from the swiftly flowing waters downtown and on the east side of the valley. All in all—it was pleasant.
We love to hear that the snow pack in Colorado and the Rockies appears to be well over the usual amount expected. The Sierra’s have received more than normal. Eastern Oregon and Western Idaho received so much the roofs on buildings collapsed from the weight, and more is expected. California is already seeing floods and filled reservoirs. We in the west hope this weather pattern continues, with less destruction of property and relieving our current drought. Even with all the rain and snow pack, officials fear Lake Meade will continue to drop down the least few feet to trigger mandatory water conservation through the west.
How can that be possible?
Obviously, we use too much water in our homes, agriculture, and play. The west is a great place to live, but with our lack of water, too many people can cause big water problems. Worse, for the whole country, lack of water creates problems for agriculture. Many vegetables and fruits grow in the warm sunshine of California and Arizona. If mandatory conservation laws are put into place, I hope the farmers and fruit growers figure out how to grow more and waste less.
Government, industries, companies, homes, families, and individuals need to be aware of how they use and waste water. Is there a way you can be more water aware?
In Eve, First Matriarch, Eve and her family face a drought. They prayed for assistance from Jehovah, then went to work.
It did not rain for a long time. The family was forced to change their water usage. Crops dried without maturing, animals that didn’t leave died from thirst. Children were bathed less often. Only after great faith and waiting many months, did the rains return.
When it did:
Absalom lifted his head and asked, “What is that sound?”
I listened. A small plop sounded on the roof, too loud to be leaves. Another plop. I opened the door and Bilhah and Absalom ran outside.
“It is raining, mama! Rain!” Absalom danced in the gentle rain.”
Sometimes, our best inventions come from a great need. Perhaps new methods to recapture and waste less will be a result of the current water crisis. Or, maybe we will get more snow and rain.
Regardless, as the snow melts, and the storms march across the continent to the east, people will be endangered by floods, tornadoes, avalanches, rock and mud slides, and other storm caused dangers. Where ever you live, be watchful of the storms and their after effects. Be careful, and use water wisely!
What are you doing to protect your water resources? How are you surviving your winter? Are you inundated with snow, or is it dry where you live? I look forward to hearing of your winter weather.
I was chatting with a good friend today. She asked me what I thought happened to the spirit of a child after a miscarriage. She has had a few, as have I. We shared our thoughts and then she said something I think is profound. “Why don’t any religions have a rite for families who lost a child to miscarriage? If they did, there would be less abortions.”
Though I understand my religion’s reasoning for not having a rite for the loss of a miscarriage, I see her point. Thousand of children are murdered every day in the name of “women’s choice,” because a child is inconvenient, or uncomfortable, or will make the woman ‘fat’, or any of the multitude of excuses for using murder as birth control. If the early loss of a child was mourned by religions, perhaps there would be less abortions.
Eve was fortunate. In her time, women and men were still perfect, with little cellular degradation. I doubt she suffered, as my friend and I have, from miscarriages. Yet, as I have stated many times, I believe she and Adam were given to know what would happen in our time.
They must have been excited to see the many technical advances of our day. Imagine their delight in seeing our advances in transportation and communication. For instance, the ability we have to travel around the world in a day, and receive messages from the other side of the world immediately. News, and other presentations are instantaneously available.
The command given specifically to Eve was to be a mother, to multiply. Much, if not all, of her life was spent bearing, raising, and teaching children—hers and those of her daughters and granddaughters. When she no longer could give birth, her daughters and granddaughters carried on replenishing the earth. Even then, I believe she taught the children and their mothers.
Knowing that, imagine her deep sorrow to learn that women would willingly allow their children to be murdered, under the guise of “women’s choice” and “my body, my choice.” I can see her weeping for many days over this knowledge. How could women so easily destroy that great gift she gave up so much for to have?
Additionally, I believe she wept when women began to struggle to bear children. It was given to women to bring life to the earth. Those of us who cannot have children, or who struggle to become and stay pregnant, feel Eve’s anguish.
Child bearing and raising children has been the domain of women. Still, men feel our pain and their own when expected children are lost. My husband grieved with me, for me and for himself, over our lost little ones. Other men ache for lost children.
I was blessed to finally deliver five healthy children. Not all couples are so blessed. We, who have lost children to miscarriage, and those for whom conception is impossible, grieve over lost children who could be ours, through adoption. We perceive abortion as selfish withholding of beautiful, healthy children from those who want children, but cannot bear them on their own.
What do you think? Should churches provide rites for miscarried children? Have you experienced the pain of miscarriage or inability to conceive? How have you managed? I look forward to your comments.
This is the weekend Christians celebrate the most important event of the world, when the Son of God allowed men to cruelly take his life on the cross. Three days later, wonder of wonders, He took up His life again, so each of us will one day be resurrected. What a sacred and holy day.
We know it was not March 27th, this is the day religionists set. It does not matter, even, that Easter is the name of a Pagan god whose symbols of fertility were bunnies and chicks. All that matters is that the Son of God, even Jesus Christ, paid the price for our sins, pains, and sorrows in the Garden of Gethsemane, accepted the sacrifice of His life on the cross at Calvary, and rose again from the garden tomb.
He lives! And because He lives, we to will live. We do not need to seek strange and wonderful ways to extend our lives, as so many have, hoping for immortality. Immortality is a gift, given freely to each of us by a loving Father and Son.
I do not celebrate the cross that took His life, I celebrate the empty tomb, that represents His living. Because of the empty tomb, we, too, will live once more, eternally. This is the best gift we could receive.
Eve knew this. She and Adam taught their children to look forward to Jehovah’s coming, when he would take upon himself a mortal body, then lay it down again as sacrifice for us. The ultimate blessing, however, was his resurrection. Adam and all the prophets taught their followers to look forward to His coming and His resurrection.
As you celebrate this holy event, what will you do to remember the resurrection that will allow all men, women, and children immortality?
It is easy to fall into the mob mentality, thinking those (fill in the blank) are horrible people and should not live among us. It happened in the 1930s, when Hitler raised his ugly voice suggesting the Jews were non-human, unworthy of the air they breathed. It happened in Africa, those black people didn’t need our support, they are uncivilized. It happens around the world, the unborn need no protection, particularly if they are children of a group of people we consider unnecessary, abort them.
In the United States, the cry has been raised against Catholics, Jews, Mormons, Irish, Italians, Mexicans, other Latinos, Russians, Muslims, and now Syrians. Each group was different, thinking differently, acting differently, looking differently from the majority. Eventually, most of these have integrated into society, and one wonders at those cries of hate.
I read the results of a Religious Freedom conference recently. The headline suggested an agreement to live and let live. Sounds good to me. If you choose to worship Allah, that is your right, do it. If you choose to worship the universe, that is your right. If you choose not to believe in any god, that, too, is your right and privilege. It is NOT your right to tear down or destroy other belief systems. Yes, live, and let live.
“Give light, and the darkness will disappear of itself.” —Desiderius Erasmus
Light comes from truth, and truth is found in all religions. It is the darkness, the dark side, if you will, that encourages hatred for others and their beliefs. Walking in the light of truth allows us to be aware of the truth found in what others believe, finding association with the truths you hold dear and those held dear by another.
I know Eve was saddened when her children turned away from the fullness of light as given to them from God. Some of her children could not accept everything, leaving to live good lives with a portion of the light she and Adam offered. Others completely turned their backs on the teachings of their parents, choosing to follow Satan, the father of darkness.
I am certain Eve received reports of wars among her children, brought about by hatred and distrust. One group of people was a little different in belief than another. Over time, I would think Eve has been weighed down by the hatred and ugliness her children have heaped on their brothers and sisters. Many tears fall, even now, because we choose to hate, we choose to fear, we choose to see the differences rather than the similarities.
Rainfall is necessary, bringing life-giving water. Nothing can live without water. Rain is falling somewhere today. Some parts of the world are wishing they didn’t get so much, like South Carolina last week; others, like we in the western United States, wish it would rain more, and more often.
Every cell in our bodies requires water. We lose about a quart of water a day, which must be replaced. We can live only about a week without replacing that water. Plants and animals require water to live. Have you ever forgot to water a houseplant? It doesn’t take long before it will wilt and die.
A friend of mine was complaining about something that happened in her life. My flip response was, “Into each life a little rain must fall.” We need rain, and its resulting water. We also need some “rain” in our lives, coming in struggles and trials. As our arms and legs require exercise to stay healthy, our emotional lives need to be exercised.
I have seen memes suggesting we need to walk away from our problems. We need to be careful about that. There is no reason to allow another to abuse us or walk all over us. On the other hand, I believe we should embrace life challenges as a means to develop our emotional “muscles.”
Our “rain” can be anything from a frown from a loved one to a severe sickness and/or death of a loved one. Different emotional muscles are developed in these situations. We may need to learn patience, face loss, or see the opportunities in change. None of those “muscles” are easy to develop, nor are any of these situations. No one likes the pain of growing; certainly not the challenge and trials that give us the opportunity to develop.
As we open ourselves to challenges, our emotional muscles will develop faster. Emotional growth doesn’t always come easy. Sometimes it comes in gentle rains; others, it falls in floods. Each allows greater emotional growth.
I wondered about Eve. She and Adam faced trials through much of their lives. Sometimes they were the gentle rain of learning to survive in a new world, learning to build a fire, learning to cook, or learning how to grow plants. Other times, the trials were along the lines of a flash flood, as in when children listened to the enticings of the Destroyer and left the safety and security of their family home and the truths of God as taught by Adam. I am certain they struggled against the currents, but by holding tight to the life saving faith in God, they withstood the floods, returning safely home to Father in Heaven.
Our lives are different than theirs. The Destroyer is fighting his last battles, he rains floods of trials on all he believes can be swayed. Even so, we must stand firm, as Eve did, choosing to continue learning, continue growing, until the end.
What trials are raining on your life today? Will you stand firm and learn, or is this one you will win by walking away? I’d love to hear your story.
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I have been thinking of the hatred filling our country lately. There seems to be strife between people of different “colors”, and nations. Our beautiful, welcoming nation, that has long invited others to join in building the creativity of our people, now rejects the poor and needy, those who have ideas that would instill greatness within us. In some ways I understand, for the idea of Sharia Law in our free land frightens me. However, how can we deny help to those who honestly flee hatred and war? How can we blame people who fled a mafia controlled land, accepting our dredges, for all that has become bad here?
“A mighty change of heart necessitates a mighty change of thinking . . . we become our thoughts and we cannot change ourselves without thinking.” —Mary Ellen Edmunds
Hatred for one or many only brings grief to the one who hates. Have you ever felt hatred for one who caused you pain or spoke to you with unkindness or in a demeaning manner? Your hatred causes you pain, not the other person. It is not worth the pain and effort required to hate. Give up your hatred. It isn’t worth the time and energy. Revenge is not worth the pain it causes. The desire for repayment is not worth the pain it causes.
You spend your time worrying and thinking of the one who wronged you. You focus on the pain, the hardness you feel. And the one who caused the hatred? He most often goes merrily along, living his life with no thought or worry for your pain. Usually he has no knowledge or thought of your pain; less of your hatred. It is your life that shrinks, whose time is wasted, storing the pain.
On that day you finally meet your offender again, he will often not have remembered the offense and will have good feelings for you. His life has not been changed, only yours.
When you change your thinking and give up the pain you hold dear, you find time and a lightness of heart you forgot existed. Your life becomes joyful again.
May I suggest, “turn the other cheek” as the Christians would say, or allow Karma to repay the debt? Revenge and hatred isn’t worth the pain.
I just wrote about a man who had committed a terrible sin. As he confronts the woman he threatened years later, I thought he would attempt the same awful act upon her. Instead, she honestly forgave him of his crime against her. His actions were low and small; he suffered significantly for them, banned from his home community, lost his wife, and spent years starving. She felt compassion for him. He changed his thoughts, began to believe he could live happily among his people, and changed his ways, becoming an honorable man.
There is one Eve never forgave, never trusted. The Destroyer, Satan. In his every action, he caused pain and sorrow for Eve and every other. He convinced beloved children to leave home and the beliefs taught by their father. He put it into the hearts of a loving son to kill his brother. Satan caused Eve incredible grief.
In all, however, she did not hate Satan for beguiling her, though his actions were absolutely wrong. I firmly believe the act of partaking of the fruit of the Tree of Good and Evil was necessary; it was not Satan’s right to offer the fruit, to convince Eve of her need to eat it. That was for another. The eating brought Adam and Eve into this world, allowing them to obey the greater command, to “multiply and replenish the earth.” Eve new this was needed, it was better to suffer in this world of sin and sorrow, and have an opportunity to have children. We, my friends, are direct results of that decision.
I do not know how to protect our marvelous free nation from the hatred that seems to be spawned by Sharia Law and others. I do not know the answers. I do know there must be a way, while maintaining our integrity. If you have ideas, feel free to share.
Whom do you feel a need to forgive? Is there someone for whom your hatred has grown too large? Take a moment and consider the gift of forgiveness. If you like, I will be happy to hear of your journey.
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The Savior said, “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13) Great is the love of a mother, who lays down her life, her time, her pleasures, her sleep—her all for her children.
I watch this new mother, bleary-eyed from lack of sleep, gently caring for the needs of her babe, only a few days old. Little ones, so new from their Father in Heaven, try to become acclimated to this new world of noise and light, struggling to control a body and learn to communicate.
It is no wonder that babies cry, for what, to us, seems no reason. How do you they share their needs, their feelings of sadness, loneliness, cold, or loss without the ability to communicate? Parents should be congratulated when they manage an outing with a new little one, more so if there are older siblings!
Long before the birth of my first child many years ago, I wondered about Eve. How did she and Adam manage the birth of their first child? Were they alone? Did angels help? How did they know what to do? These questions stimulated my thinking, my wondering. At last, I decided the only way to know, in this world, was to explore it in writing.
I wrote a book, Eve, First Matriarch, to answer those and other questions for myself. The first draft was highly instructive for me. In that effort of discovery, I see Eve as a young mother, much like my daughter and daughters-in-law, doing their best, loving and growing with their babies, seeking to find the best way to help them grow.
Eve and Adam were successful parents, allowing many of their children to choose, even when those choices brought them sorrow. Our lives continue, much as theirs, as we bring children to this world, teach them, and watch them have children of their own. Love is perpetuated, love is taught, love is learned. How can you not feel great love with a tiny child in your arms?
When do you feel great love? Share it, please.
Pictures of a drowned Syrian child have brought the plight of Syrian refugees who are fleeing the violence and battles in Syria. It has become a flood of men, women, and children, struggling to find their way to Germany, or any other country that may accept them.
Families are spending everything they have to buy a spot in a smuggler’s flimsy boat. So many people fill these boats, people seem to be hanging off the edges. Is it any wonder many of these boats sink and the passengers drown? I have not seen it yet, but I would bet the smugglers wear life jackets, while the passengers find none available.
The trickle of Syrians running from war usually land in Greece, who is already struggling financially. It is no wonder they prefer the refugees move on to other countries. Other countries see the flood of these people and wonder how they will manage to support the thousands of refugees. There is no way one country can absorb that many people without economically drowning.
I have heard the suggestion that some of these refugees be brought to the United States. I struggle with this idea. My heart grieves when I see mothers and children in holding areas. I cried with the rest of the world when I saw the little 3-year-old who drowned. I fear the families who seek protection will also include hidden terrorists, who hate America and our values.
How sad the other Muslim countries surrounding Syria refuse to accept any of these refugees. Is it not part of their culture, their religion, that they should help the poor and the needy? It is part of our country and the Christian religion.
All things were held in common during the time of Eve and Adam. No women or children who were willing to live and work in their communities were prevented from become full members, were fed, clothed, and housed. Some of their children chose not to live as expected. They left and wars eventually occurred. If those refugees wanted to become part of the community in which Adam and Eve lived, they would have been required to follow the laws of the community. Certainly, Eve would have hoped the women and children would find a safe home away from the wars.
America has been much like the home of Eve and Adam. Refugees have been welcomed with the expectation that they live by the laws of our land. Unfortunately, some of those refugees have come to us, not planning to obey the laws and help continue to keep America great, but rather to find a way to undermine our laws and our ways of life.
If they hate us, they should stay away. If they choose to obey laws; support our culture, willing to accept the standards of that culture; and work hard to take responsibility to support themselves and their families, let them come. Otherwise, let them return to Syria, or go to one of the other Muslim countries.
What do you think about the refugee problem? Shall we invite the refugees to live in your community? Please comment.