Thursday, December 2, 2010

Finally Following the Gut, HOORAY!!!!

We pulled Jesse out of school.

Don't even get me STARTED on the reasons. We were hesitant (to say the least) to enroll him in public school this year but in the end we decided to officially give it a try, even if only to rule out the option once our suspicians were confirmed.


So, now we're a homeschool family. So far, it's fantastic. (I know, I know. We're just getting started. But don't kill my buzz, people. I need it.)

We're still gathering curriculum, but here's what we plan to focus on. Lots of common thinking with this dude. This is an excerpt from an article on his site:

Today I frequently return to the lessons I learned in my youth.
We had a home teacher, an older gentleman (he was also Stake Patriarch), who would visit with us faithfully on the first Sunday of each month. He told us the stories of his youth.
He was raised on a farm in southern Idaho. They grew wheat, corn and potatoes. They also had a small herd of cattle. He had a neighbor that would torment his father. This neighbor would point out everything that our friend’s father did wrong. The furrows were not straight enough. They didn’t fertilize properly. The cultivating was never right. The irrigation was not done properly. Nothing would satisfy this neighbor.
This wise father operated his farm in an unusual manner. He gave each of his boys responsibility for a 20 acre plot when they reached a certain age. The boys were to plow, fertilize, plant, irrigate, cultivate, and harvest. They even got to keep the profits. They just had to replace the seed. The boys made many mistakes. Our friend told us that the first year he had responsibility for his 20 acres, he barely harvested enough corn to reseed the next year. He was very embarrassed, even ashamed.
The neighbor was right. Many things on the farm were not as they should be. The boys were running things, or so it appeared.
One day our friend overheard his father and the neighbor (who was an atheist, and did not believe that parents had any right to indoctrinate their children) talking. His father said words to this effect: “You don’t understand you think that I am raising potatoes or corn or cows. I’m not raising any crops or any animals. I am raising boys . If you spent as much time raising your boys, as you spend telling me how to run my farm, perhaps they would have turned out different.”
This wise father was letting his boys learn, and make mistakes, under his watchful eye. He maintained the bulk of the farm and made sure that the family had enough, but he allowed the boys to make mistakes and see the consequences of those mistakes. The neighbor was just a farmer, only raising crops, but he was never a father.
Children do not raise themselves. They learn from their parents, in both word and in deed.
I was visiting with friends from my mission in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania, when one person whom I did not know asked me where I was from. I told him I was from Southern California. This brought to mind visions of endless beaches, lined with palm trees and decorated with beautiful bikini clad women. I explained that I was not from that part of California, but I was from the desert, a place that I affectionately call “the place of eternal religious retribution.” I told him, “It is very hot there, as a matter of fact, it was 114 degrees in the shade the day before I flew out here.” When he heard this, he leaned over to his wife and said, “Remember that. Next time you’re out there, keep out of the shade.”
At first, I thought that this comment was just funny. The more I thought about it the more profound it became, because when you’re not in the shade, you are in the light. I learned a song, in church, as a child that goes like this:

Teach me to walk, in the light of His love.Teach me to talk to my Father above,Teach me to know of the things that are right,
Teach me, teach me, to walk in the light.
When we are not in the shade, we are in the light. My parents taught my brothers and me to avoid anything shady, and stay in the light. I was the youngest of four boys. There was never any doubt that my parents were always raising boys. Now my wife and I are in the business of raising daughters.
(Note: Self teaching is a valid approach. I recommend using it only went there is no other choice.)

THIS is the kind of stuff I want my kids to learn, and the kind of stuff I intend to teach them. And speaking of the subject, we've also taken this big change as an opportunity to impart some other things. I've been taking a moment here and there to teach the boys all the skills of my regular work around the house- like, virtually all of it. YOU WOULD NOT BELIEVE how little trouble it's been. And suddenly, everything gets done. No, seriously! I mean, we've cut out a little of what used to take up our time, but WOW! You can ask Matt, and he will confirm. The house is clean when he gets home. The kids have learned more (academically & real-world) than they ever would have before, and so far I even get to blow dry my hair every day!! NO BULL, I'm telling the truth. So, God does answer prayers. See, I told ya!! Goodness, life is better at this moment than I'd have ever dared to wish for. (Satisfied sigh.)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Want it?

Getting rid of most of my Halloween stuff. Anyone want to pick it up? Otherwise, will take to Good Will. Thanks y'all!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

A Good Change

Cruising around this morning I found this article. I learned SO MUCH about something that I've been failing at. I was strongly impressed that our family needs to MAKE A CHANGE. After reading that article, we will no longer allow this harmful influence to dull our spiritual sensitivity. I was particularly struck by these points:

"The Spirit will not inhabit a polluted temple."

"We must recognize... and take responsibility for our choices." -(Ouch. Responsibility for choices is something I do my best to take very seriously.)

Maybe the most important part for me was the article's emphasis on the dulling impacts of violent entertainment on our senses, (spiritually speaking). I can remember some very distinct moments in my life of feeling wounded by violent images from movies, and by harsh, dark music. I remember being very aware that some good part of me had died, and trying to get the courage to stop the source. I'll admit, in recent years there have been a couple times I've seen one of my kids experience that spiritual pummeling from tv or movies. This article made me face that I have failed to adequately protect my family. I should be preventing these things, and when they have happened I should have talked to the boys and taught them why it was beneath our standards to watch that junk! So we're going to sit down as a family and talk about violence and what it does. I think it would be good to go through our dvd's as a family and decide what to throw away. Guess we'll have to talk about the difference between the lessons/ history taught from our scripture story movies, verses shows that use violence for entertainment. Also this seems like a perfect opportunity to discuss our other standards of what we watch/ listen to. "Uplifting and edifying" comes to mind.

So from now on there will be a heavier filter on what we bring into our home and minds. We've screened before, of course, but it will be good to make this conscious choice as a family. (We've never allowed video games so that's not an issue for us.) I feel really good about this! If you want to check out the article, see "It's 'Only' Violence," by Brad J. Bushman on, or copy this link:

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Glennypoo, My Hero!

Did y'all know about the rally this last weekend? Inspiring! So nice to hear some honesty and truth- that's what I admire about the man! Here's an interesting report:

Monday, August 30 2010

Glenn Beck Rally: Restoring Honor
By Maurine Proctor

George Washington wanted to be a farmer, not a president. He wanted to be a surveyor, not a general, but when they came knocking at his door for help, he answered the call.

“If we are going to change our country with lasting ramifications, we will each come to the point in our life when we are at the last thread, and then say have I not yet done enough for my country? The answer is no, because God is not yet done with you yet, and he is not yet done with man’s freedom yet.

“There comes a time when one generation must sacrifice for the next, so our children can have a chance,” said Beck. “If we want this for our children and our grandchildren, we must pledge our lives and our fortunes.”

Sounding every bit like a Latter-day Saint, he told the crowd that it was not enough to stick $20 in the basket at church. He advised them to tithe. “It’s my joy and honor to give 10%. Our nation can only do great works in our churches if they have the means to do it.”

He said that people have to live the truth and “the truth will set you free.”

“If we do these things,” Beck said, we will heal a nation. We will do what the greatest American generation did the last century. We will be a shelter for the whole world. The storm that is coming is not just an American storm. It is a global storm.”

America has always come in at the end to save the rest of the world during these storms. “But we are not prepared,” said Beck.

Emerging Role as Leader of Christian Conservatives

Hearing that this nation will fail, unless God is the foundation, is certainly a core doctrine for the Latter-day Saints, a theme oft repeated in the Book of Mormon in words like these: “This is a land which is choice above all other lands; wherefore he that doth possess it shall serve God or shall be swept off; for it is the everlasting decree of God” (Ether 2:10). It is not surprising to hear this sentiment at the center of Beck’s outlook.

What the media keeps harping on, however is Beck’s emerging role as a national leader for the Christian conservatives, something that is surprising since Beck is LDS, and some Evangelicals have difficulty with that.

Ralph Reed, former director of the Christian Coalition told CNN’s Belief Blog, "The evangelicals participating in the Restore Honor event are not endorsing Glenn Beck's theology, nor is he asking them to."

"Together, we and millions of our fellow citizens are calling America back to its Judeo-Christian values of faith, hard work, individual initiative, the centrality of marriage and family, hope, charity, and relying on God and civic and faith-based organizations rather than government," said Reed, who leads the Faith and Freedom Coalition.”

Beck has spent the last year meeting Christian leaders asking them to join with him in calling for a return to the Judeo-Christian values that marked America’s founding.

Though Beck consciously chose to avoid overtly political discussion at this rally, and the crowd looked more like a Sunday School picnic than a political gathering, the press who have covered this event sees the enthusiastic response as a harbinger that this group, who are concerned about big government and are skeptical about incumbents, will have the power to flex their muscles at the upcoming election.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Jacob Marie.

That's his official title when he doesn't care enough to really sell a good fit. We've known this little dude for what feels like only a month or two, but since meeting him he's taught us plenty.
Now I'm about to make one of those statements. We've all known some crazy woman who claims that her infant woke up one morning reciting the Desiderata in Danish, or whose toddler has now expertly filed the family's taxes for two years running. So here's to my initiation into the Psycho Maternal Self Delusion Society. You ready?
With my mortal life as collateral, I affirm to you all- in perfect sobriety- that Jacob pitched his first fake tantrum when he was exactly three and a half days old. We hadn't yet left the hospital. Being a seasoned mom by this point, you can be sure that I recognized the episode for exactly what it was. The kid had spent over 72 hours gathering intelligence on the fussy creature who dispensed his food. Apparently that's all the time he required to familiarize himself with the ins and outs of human (or at least baby-) interaction. (Before I go on, it should be noted that Jake was not my first child. Or my second. I was a C-section vet by this time and I was tired; thus, when the baby was sleeping, I put him down.) So the exchange was clear and predictable: crying=holding. Baby cries, Mama picks him up and talks all sweetly till he stops. Baby cries, Mama picks him up and talks all sweetly till he stops. Baby cries... Astonishingly he detected a pattern in the cycle. I remember specifically, sitting on the Stone Aged, fluid-proof Postpartum mattress with Jakey's luxurious plastic bassinet beside me when I heard it: the ceremonial First Fake Cry. For a second I actually doubted my own veteran-mom judgment, but no, there it was- true as the color in my hair. I laughed aloud and reached in to pick him up and test my findings. Jake was six inches off the sheet when he clamped his mouth shut again. Immediately I set him back down, and- yep, there it was again. Whhhhaaaaaaaaaaa! It was then that I knew it, and I might have cried a bit myself. We had a professional on our hands.
Over a year has since gone by and my premonition has proven flawlessly accurate again and again. And BOY were we ill-prepared. In fact Matt and I still lack the competency to adequately manage affairs with Toot aboard. (Did you know that? We call him Toot. Guess why.) He's opinionated- (strange...). He's charismatic. He's resourceful. He's vegetarian. (Just kidding.) He is giving us a run for our money- a run for most things, actually. (Seems like we cruise through life these days at a dead sprint.)
The boy's an evil genius when it comes to picking on his brothers. At any moment he's got a three-tiered plan to manipulate his way to what he wants next. The main trouble for us, you see, is that throughout his various ploys and tactics, the boy is irresistibly enchanting. Perhaps the fiercest weapon in his arsenal is a startlingly dashing smile, which he doesn't hesitate to flash as necessary. Instantly it stuns his pray, rendering futile any resistance to which said victim was clinging. In an almost grotesquely ironic twist, the Target is most often left in a daze- and more infatuated with this mystical creature than before the incident occurred. Merciless. Diabolical. Magnificent.
Luckily, Jacob is generally a benevolent dictator. He does seem to prefer smiles and laughter over, say, the mindless slaughter of his opposition. If he can win an encounter without things getting ugly, (and if he's recently had a nap) he will more often than not choose that course. For this we thank Divine Providence. After all, reality has taught us that despite our (unremarkable at best) efforts, it's true. In our house oftentimes, Toot is king. Or at least he likes to think so. Check back as the tournament continues. In times of old I've been known to play a good game, myself. Maybe if I can get a nap in, or something...


Monday, June 28, 2010

Had to Post This One.

So touched by this. Got it in my inbox and really loved it. Hope y'all appreciate it as well. My love to everyone!

Best Prayer I Have Heard In A Long Time...

Heavenly Father, Help us remember that the jerk who cut us off in
traffic last night is a single mother who worked nine hours that day and
is rushing home to cook dinner, help with homework, do the laundry and
spend a few precious moments with her children.

Help us to remember that the pierced, tattooed, disinterested young man
who can't make change correctly is a worried 19-year-old college student,
balancing his apprehension over final exams with his fear of not getting
his student loans for next semester.

Remind us, Lord, that the scary looking bum, begging for money in the
same spot every day (who really ought to get a job!) is a slave to
addictions that we can only imagine in our worst nightmares.

Help us to remember that the old couple walking annoyingly slow through
the store aisles and blocking our shopping progress are savoring this
moment, knowing that, based on the biopsy report she got back last week,
this will be the last year that they go shopping together.

Heavenly Father, remind us each day that, of all the gifts you give us,
the greatest gift is love. It is not enough to share that love with those
we hold dear. Open our hearts not to just those who are close to us, but
to all humanity.. Let us be slow to judge and quick to forgive, show
patience, empathy and love. Matt 5:44

Working for God on earth doesn't pay much. . . but His retirement plan
is out of this world.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


Good Heavens. Every now & then my darling mother-in-law emails me something to read (which ALWAYS proves to be INCREDIBLE). Lately I've hardly read even the most pressing things in my inbox, but tonight I felt like sitting down and reading whatever she'd sent me most recently. All I can say is: ...I don't know what to say!! I am strongly impressed of the purity of truth I found in this article. Some of these concepts BLOW my mind! Furthermore, there is an intense itch for discussion brewing and I'm dying to pick the brains of some of my peeps. So read it and tell me what ya think.

I should add here that an open-minded (and -hearted and -spirited) approach is the way to decipher what you believe is truth of course, as with anything else. Any questions, check out or, or ask me & if I don't have the answer we'll find out together. But seriously, read this. It's amazing! I painted red the parts that stood out most to me. Hope you enjoy! :)

The Dynamics of Sin

By Larry Barkdull

If you enjoyed this article you’ll also enjoy, Maurine Proctor’s “Can You Feel So Now?

I confess that on occasion I have sinned. I’m not proud of it. What I thought I would enjoy ended up making me miserable. Worse, I gained a troubling companion whom I had a hard time shaking loose. This article is dedicated to my fellow sinners. All of the rest of you can ignore it and rejoice that you are past such things. But I have the feeling that I am in good company. I am sure that there are people out there like me, those who are trying to do their best, but who, to their disappointment, frequently bump up against their “natural man” and the frightening reality of sin.

Why does Satan tempt us to commit sin? To make us miserable is the quick answer. But if we dig deeper and gain understanding of how misery is produced, we will unearth Satan’s sinister strategy.

The Influence of the Adversary

A mother of seven spoke of sin as disempowering spiritual hemorrhaging that renders a person ignorant of God and of the simple truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ:

Two of my seven children left the Church, leaving me hurt and confused. For a while, I beat myself up over my apparent failure as a mother, but that did little good. Despite all my suffering and soul-searching, I could not discover where my husband and I had gone wrong. Not that we are perfect parents—we are not—but why had we lost these two children? They were brought up alongside our other children who had remained true.

When I decided to give myself a break and look for another reason, I took my question to the Lord. My conversation went something like this: “These children have not only left the Church and are critical of it, they also seem absolutely ignorant of the most basic gospel principles! That is the most confusing part to me. It is as though they had never heard of gospel concepts before—like everything is foreign to them. How could this be? They grew up in our home where we had family prayers, family home evenings, and gospel discussions. Weren’t they listening? They went to church with us and had equal opportunities in the gospel with our other children, and yet they seem to be as clueless as new investigators. They seem to have forgotten everything that we taught them. How did this happen?”

As I pondered, a scripture was impressed upon my mind: “That wicked one cometh and taketh away light and truth, through disobedience.” I couldn’t remember the location of the scripture, but I soon found it in Doctrine and Covenants 93:39. The adjoining verses read, “I have commanded you to bring up your children in light and truth,” and “Light and truth forsake that evil one.” Suddenly, I realized what had happened. My husband and I had tried to bring up our children in light and truth, but these two children had chosen to commit sin in their youth. Worse, they had failed to repent. Their disobedience and disregard for repentance had opened the door for Satan to come and take away their light and truth. Now they were rendered ignorant, as though they had no gospel literacy at all.

When they lost their light and truth, they filled the void by adopting bizarre philosophies to explain life and spiritual things. Now I knew why their inactivity and rebellion had happened, and now I gained a greater appreciation for the prophets’ counsel to repent quickly and sincerely. Procrastination, I learned, causes gospel stagnation at best and gospel illiteracy and captivity by the devil at worst. Now armed with this understanding, I center my prayers on asking for opportunities to reintroduce basic gospel concepts to these children with the hope that they will one day remember and respond.

Defining terms

Light. This mother used the words “light” and “truth” as though they were a substance. In fact, they are. A survey of the scriptures reveals that the word lighti is synonymous with truth,ii spirit,iii intelligence,iv power,v law,vi life,vii agency,viii and glory,ix to name a few. Joseph Smith revealed: “All spirit is matter, but it is more fine or pure, and can only be discerned by purer eyes; We cannot see it; but when our bodies are purified we shall see that it is all matter.”x Clearly, spirit or light is a substance, and Satan tries to steal it. The absence of light causes misery.

Natural man. There are a variety of definitions about the natural man, but one characteristic that we ought to explore is that the body of the natural man is made up of telestial material. A reality of that condition is the fact that celestial ideas are wholly foreign to him, as are putting forth celestial efforts and living celestial laws. The nature of the natural man is to follow the instincts of his telestial body and partake of that which naturally resides in a telestial environment. Consequently, by nature the natural man is “carnal, sensual and devilish.”xi

Carnal, sensual and devilish. Beyond being a list of loathsome characteristics, carnal, sensual and devilish seems to form a downward, spiraling cycle. To be carnal is to be of the flesh; that is, we naturally pamper the physical body and are inclined to succumb to its passions and appetites. Both the apostle Paul and Nephi’s brother, Jacob, state that “to be carnally-minded is death.”xii That is, if we give in to carnality, we will eventually give in to sensuality by seeking more and more physical and sexual pleasures. At least two things are automatic with sensuality: lying and a damaged testimony. The carnally minded who become sensual will stop believing and begin seeking physical evidence as signs to confirm the truth.xiii This condition is spiritual death. Such behavior weakens us to the point that Satan can take control of our bodies and then we become devilish. Now our behavior begins to mirror that of Satan; we become sexually perverted, sinister, cruel, scheming, deceitful, and mischievous. We begin to act like the demons who prod us to become like them. The carnal, sensual and devilish cycle inevitably leads to apostasy. Breaking covenants is inevitable,xiv and that tragedy summons the judgment of God and damnation of the soul.

Stealing Light

Because Satan knows that the body is highly susceptible to suggestion and can be acted upon by outside influences, he knows that he can tempt us to sin. If we cave in, something terrible happens: “That wicked one cometh and taketh away light and truth.” How does Satan take away light and truth? “Through disobedience.”i Literally, sin creates a gash in our souls, allowing Satan to gain entrance. Now light hemorrhages from us. Once inside, Satan can drain us of truth, spirit, intelligence, power, law, life, agency, and glory.

Are we listening to the scriptures? The strategy of Satan is to tempt us to sin so that he can gain entrance and drain us of light!

How does he accomplish this feat? Through direct temptation, deception, flattery, and sometimes abuse: “Yea, he stirreth up their hearts to anger….Yea, he saith unto them: Deceive and lie in wait to catch, that ye may destroy; behold, this is no harm. And thus he flattereth them, and telleth them that it is no sin to lie that they may catch a man in a lie, that they may destroy him. And thus he flattereth them, and leadeth them along until he draggeth their souls down to hell; and thus he causeth them to catch themselves in their own snare. And thus he goeth up and down, to and fro in the earth, seeking to destroy the souls of men.”ii

If he can empty us of light, we will be left in darkness, and then the mischief begins. Without light, we are without truth, intelligence, power, law, and agency, the capacity to choose: “Behold, here is the agency of man, and here is the condemnation of man; because that which was from the beginning is plainly manifest unto them, and they receive not the light. And every man whose spirit receiveth not the light is under condemnation.”iii

Do we grasp the meaning?

When Satan gains entrance to our souls and convinces us to sin, he steals our light and thus our ability to act and choose is greatly diminished. Satan has won after all. Our agency, that for which we fought in the war in heaven, is now his…and we hardly put up a fight.

Inside Our Souls

Does it terrify us to think that Satan can actually take up residence in our souls by convincing us to sin? He might tell us otherwise, but it is true. Once inside, Satan can fill our thoughts with myriad evils and convince us to experiment with all sorts of wickedness. We must keep in mind that the body has no inherent capacity to act on its own, but rather must be “acted upon”i by another source. If that source is evil, carnality will soon give way to sensuality and eventually devolve to devilishness.

Now Satan can explain away spiritual events, including our testimony. He can change our opinion of people we love so that we see them through the filter of criticism. He can ruin our perception of ourselves, and plant the idea in our minds that we are beyond forgiveness and beneath God’s consideration. He can parade our sins and the sins of others before our eyes and torture us with ugly memories. He can replay sinful events as though we were watching a movie. He can invade our sleep with horrifying dreams. He can render us powerless to resist further temptations. He can tell us what to think and what to do, and we will do it! He will tell us that we are good people after all, and what we are doing does not qualify as sin; we should go easy on ourselves and other people, and we ought to adopt the attitude of tolerance—a prevalent latter-day deception. Clearly, with a ruptured soul that is bleeding light, we are as impotent as a victim of a stabbing.

Satan’s Arsenal

With one-third of the hosts of heaven and a legion of disembodied unclean spirits at his command, Satan enjoys almost unlimited access to talents and abilities beyond our imagination. Within his demonic realm are skilled artists and musicians, medical personnel, mechanics, people who understand the workings of the mind, others who peddle sex, businessmen, philosophers, scientists, and geniuses of war. Clearly, he can sabotage the arts, cause illnesses, aggravate us with break downs, torment our minds, lure us with sexual perversions, attack our livelihoods, advance seemingly reasonable philosophies and theories, and turn us against each other. Moreover, he can enlist weak-minded or wicked individuals on the earth to do his bidding. Whereas the Holy Ghost imparts spiritual gifts to the righteous, Satan gives counter spiritual gifts to his followers, then he uses those people as his instruments. Unfortunately, the weak-minded, spiritually immature, and sinful people cannot readily discern his tactics.

Satan is the devourer.i Therefore, we must “be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.”ii With little imagination, we might expect that he would have a counterfeit to Home Teachers and Visiting Teachers, except his companionships would be assigned to carefully observe their charges with the purpose of identifying weaknesses. Perhaps then they would report back and devise a strategy to destroy us in the same way we would report to our church leaders for the purpose of creating a plan to give charitable service.

The Sin Becomes a Cancer

Once Satan has succeeded in causing us to act on his temptation, he attempts to hold the sin in place by persuading us to wink at the transgression, disregard it, or feel so much guilt that we are paralyzed to seek wellness through repentance. The problem with unrepentant sin is that it is the seed of a spiritual tumor, which grows inside the soul until it has consumed it. The seed of unrepentant sin is never dormant; its cells divide like cancer until the system is overwhelmed by it. When Satan convinces us to sin and persuades us to procrastinate repentance, he enjoys free reign to dull our conscience, steal away our light and truth, and render our soul spiritually illiterate. The cumulative effect weakens the soul so that Satan can shackle it and lead it carefully down to hell.i

The Atonement—The Only Source of Healing

Only repentance made possible by the Atonement of Jesus Christ can once again infuse light and truth into the soul and free it from Satan’s grasp. We must examine ourselves for unrepentant sin and get ourselves to the Healer, whose servant is the bishop. Only the bishop holds the keys to direct the healing process; only the Melchizedek Priesthood has the power to eject an uninvited influence from afflicting our souls. We can no more heal ourselves of a serious spiritual disease than we can heal ourselves of a serious physical disease without consulting medical professionals. To assume the contrary is a deception perpetrated by Satan for the purpose of remaining inside and in control. Elder Boyd K. Packer said,

In the battle of life, the adversary takes enormous numbers of prisoners, and many know of no way to escape and are pressed into his service. Every soul confined to a concentration camp of sin and guilt has a key to the gate. The adversary cannot hold them if they know how to use it. The key is labeled Repentance. The twin principles of repentance and forgiveness exceed in strength the awesome power of the adversary.i

The Body’s Difficulty with Retaining Light

Finally, we must wage our defense against the forces of darkness from a point of view of knowledge. We must know our enemy and we must understand his strategy. Clearly, the adversary’s attack is aimed at our most vulnerable area: the physical, telestial body. The body of the natural man seems incapable of maintaining the substance of light,i which is essential to spiritual life. That is our primary weakness, as Moroni pointed out.ii Whereas a resurrected celestial body “shall be filled with light, and there shall be no darkness in [it],”iii a mortal telestial body must receive ongoing transfusions of light in order to exist spiritually. Therein lies our answer.

Armed with this knowledge, we know how to defend ourselves and to heal from former sin. The Lord has told us how we can infuse light into our systems and thus protect ourselves. A few transfusion methods are scripture study, partaking of the sacrament, anointing with oil, charitable service, temple worship and, of course, prayer and fasting. The more our bodies are filled with light, the more we can comprehend all things,iv and the more we can detect and resist the onslaught of Satan’s temptations.

With light and truth re-entering our souls, something marvelous begins to happen: “Light and truth forsake that evil one.”v The combination of confession to and counseling with the bishop, sincere repentance, infusing light and truth into our souls, and, if necessary, receiving a blessing by the authority of the Melchizedek Priesthood, carries the power of casting away Satan, obtaining forgiveness from the Lord, and achieving total spiritual health. Whereas sin breaks and divides, the Atonement mends and makes broken things one. The Atonement provides a constant pull to bring together fractured parts into their perfect form. Therefore, the frightening realities of sin can be overcome and eradicated by the merciful Atonement of Jesus Christ. The Atonement allows us to experience life without being destroyed by our choices.

Once we are delivered and re-lighted by Jesus Christ, we are commanded to light other people whom Satan has wounded and entered. The singular commission to the repentant and the forgiven is to reach out to those who are spiritually dying and to bring them to the Light, even Jesus Christ.

Click here to sign up for Meridian's FREE email updates.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

You Make My Heart Go Pitter-Patt. Oh How I Love You, Redbox!

The backlash will be bitter, I'm sure. And I can't blame you grandparents for your disappointment that I'm finally blogging and there aren't pics of the kids... still. :)
But I need to be an adult female for a sec, despite my mommihood.

So here's my shout out to the cheapest date ever- and a hot one at that! You know what I'm talking about, baby, R-E-D-B-O-X. The other night we rented Young Victoria (or whatever it's called). Five stars from me! Beautifully portrayed the sweetness of newly-weddedness, and without being vulgar! Just imagine, and it's from Hollywood?! So for a buck, rent a great movie. Pair that with an excessively large bag of mini snickers, maybe even a little mascara, and Presto! You've got yourself an official date with your hubby. Oh and don't forget to wear the kids out all day so you can haul-butt through bedtime and get them to sleep. Bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha... Blockbuster can lick my big toe.

So I have this nasty little habit of writing on my hand. Some of my friends have even commented (good-naturedly) that there's almost never a time when I don't have something written there. You can monitor my present degree of out-of-controlness just by glancing at my hand, which has sometimes bled over from the back side to my palm. PLEASE, someone tell me that you LOSE all the little papers you make notes on. I might as well swallow each page before the ink is dry. I KNOW I'm not the only sufferer of mommy brain, but please remind me. What absurd things have you jacked up recently, simply because you've lost the capacity to think? I'd list mine here, but my self allotted half hour to blog is nearly up and there's no realistic way to even begin such an undertaking...

Anyway, miss y'all. Let me know what's up with the grown-up side of your life (if you still have one).

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Have you ever:

Had to pick Chuck E Cheese tickets out of your bed at night?

Gone pee-pee while on hold with the cable company (and had the dude answer a little sooner than you expected)?

Been tired enough to actually give your child a hostess cupcake to eat on the couch?

Awaken to a suspiciously warm, wet sensation coming from a sleeping child beside you and just closed your eyes again, praying for another 5 minutes?

Silently hoped the kids would fall asleep on the drive home so you wouldn't have to brush their teeth?

Slipped your kids a treat for being exceedingly cute, even though they'd had enough sugar already?

Been scolded for trying to flip multiple pages at once to get through a particularly obnoxious children's book?

Ignored your pressing To Do List so you could cuddle your kiddo on the couch?

Hidden candy wrappers at the bottom of the trash can so no one (not even you) will see the evidence of your binge-a-licious crime?

Been mid-diaper/ -mess/ -project and looked the other way while the baby ate something (that's right, I'm gonna say it)- from last night's dinner that he found on the floor?

...Oh. I have.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Happy Birthday to Gabe.

Gabe got a real drum with wooden drumsticks for his birthday. I was just stealing a whole 30 seconds alone so I could pee, and Matt burst into the bathroom. The drumsticks were hanging from his face, one in each nostril, and he was in monster stance, growling "Bllllaaaaaaa." I looked at him and said, "It was inevitable, I suppose. Impressive you could get the big ends in there."
"It hurts," he mumbled as he walked out.

Friday, January 22, 2010

My Jesse Boy!

Two things. Sweet doozie first, then the other doozie.

I was blown away today when he said this. We were all looking for the case of kids' movies so Jesse could watch a particular one. We couldn't find it anywhere. I had previously put the wrong one in the player, and he wasn't exactly giddy about it. After LOTS of searching, he caught me by complete surprise when he jumped into my arms and said, "It's ok Mom. I'll just be grateful for what I have." !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I guess some things do get through to him... Who'd of thunk? I'll control my compulsion to gush endlessly and I'll just say this: I was totally shocked, deeply pleased, and overwhelmingly grateful that somehow my son is learning these things from us. One moment of success really does make up for thousands of worries and doubts. Nothing else is this fulfilling.

Now this one was a few days ago. Perhaps the funniest situation I've ever witnessed firsthand took place in my living room. It was Sunday, just one day after Matt had taken Jesse over to the neighbor's to see them skin some rabbits they'd just hunted.
(Side note: I know that is controversial. Here's why I was totally on board for my son experiencing such a thing. Yes, it's a somewhat disturbing process. Yes, it's fairly harsh to watch. But it's reality. And I firmly believe that kids should understand the truth of things, on a level that's appropriate to their development. It offends people's sensibilities the first time they see an animal get killed/ butchered- as it should. I think God made that a part of our nature so we would have a certain reverence and respect for life. But, animals were created for the benefit of man. These rabbits were killed to serve as food for our neighbors, and witnessing the process undergone to achieve that purpose brings a certain sense of significance that steaks in the freezer just don't communicate. It's an important lesson to learn. Matt explained this to Jesse and answered all his questions. And, since that experience, Jes hasn't left any uneaten meat on his plate, because he knows an animal was sacrificed to feed our family.)

So back to Sunday. We were all laying around, enjoying the breeze from the open windows and the unusual quiet that had possessed our home. It was so peaceful and lovely! But Jesse got bored, so he turned to us and said, "Dad, do you think the neighbors are peeling any rabbits today?" I laughed till I was delirious. (I've never pushed oranges on the kids as part of their fruit quota, because I am lazy and of the position that they aren't worth peeling. Besides, I can chew one for 20 minutes without managing to swallow, and the texture is unappealing at best. Recently though, Matt's on an orange kick and the kids are loving them! Hence the terminology in reference to the rabbits.) Priceless!!