Thursday, July 17, 2014

IT'S THE END OF THE WORLD.....and now you know it

So I just couldn't resist this scoop, the first blog to report the "End of the World"..... is in Siberia.
And you know what, I am not even going to quote any scripture, because you "know it". even the one about when we shall see Jesus as He really is, because "you know it". So now that we "know", maybe the Zombie Apocalypse will be cancelled. Lets Party

  R.E.M
Ямал - невероятная воронка Giant Hole in the ground - Yamal (Russia)
A helicopter flying over a region of Sibera referred to as the “end of the world,” recorded footage of a mysterious, giant crater in the middle of the ground estimated to be 260 feet in diameter.
At first, skeptical observers thought the images must be a fake. After all, it appears to be something out a summer science fiction blockbuster, with the giant hole appearing to descend infinitely below the surface.
But Russian officials confirmed the crater’s existence and say they are sending a team of experts to investigate the site located in an area known as the Yamal peninsula. Scientists from the Center for the Study of the Arctic and the Cryosphere Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences plan to take samples from around the scene.
So, what is responsible for the giant crater?
View photo
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A mysterious giant hole appeared in Siberia, and scientists are puzzled by how it formed
A mysterious giant hole appeared in Siberia, and scientists are puzzled by how it formed
"We can definitely say that it is not a meteorite. No details yet," a spokesperson from Russia’s Emergencies Ministry told the Siberian Times.
Experts say it’s probably not the result of a giant meteor crash or a sinkhole, even though Siberia was home to the famous Tunguska Explosion of 1908.
The leading theory is that the crater is actually a natural phenomenon known as a ‘pingo.’ A pingo, or hydrolaccolith, occurs when ice pushes up from underneath the ground. In this case, climate change may have caused the ice to melt, resulting in a crater where the earth-covered frost once stood. courtesy of Eric Pfeiffer on Twitter (@ericpfeiffer)
This was fun; what  is your favorite "End of the World" music? Of course we all like REM, but how about Prince's "Party Like it's 1999". Let me know what your "World's End Party and playlist would be". lighten up, it's just a party.  

Monday, June 30, 2014

A Woman Taken…

An (imaginary) interview with Michal; King David’s first wife
So how did you two meet?
1 Samuel 18:20 And Michal, Saul’s daughter loved David; and they told Saul, and the thing pleased him.
How did he propose to you?
1 Samuel 18:25 And Saul said, “Thus shall ye say to David, the king desires not any dowry, but an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the kings enemies. But Saul thought to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines
26 And when his servants told David these words, it pleased David well to be the king’s son in law; and the days were not expired.
27 Wherefore David arose and went, he and his men, and slew of the Philistines two hundred men; and David brought their foreskins, and gave them in full tale to the king, that he might be the king’s son in law. And Saul gave him Michal his daughter to wife.
So King Saul “sold” his daughter Michal into marriage to David for 100 foreskins, wow what a romantic. But as fate would have it, their marriage was doomed from the start. The problem was that Saul, David’s father in law, had a death wish for David. The unlikely couple had to separate one evening after a family dinner when Saul tried to “pin” David to a wall with his spear.  
1 Samuel 19:10 And Saul sought to smite David, even to the wall with the javelin; but he slipped away out of Saul’s presence, and he smote the javelin into the wall; and David fled and escaped that night.
Unfortunately this would be the last time the two star crossed lovers would see each other again, until years later when David was finally crowned King.
1 Samuel 19:11 Saul also sent messengers unto David’s house, to watch him and to slay him in the morning; and Michal, David’s wife told him, saying “If thou save not thy life tonight, tomorrow thou shall be slain.
12 So Michal let David down through a window; and he went and fled and escaped. 
So enough about Michal, this is really a story about her future sister-wife, Bath-sheba. I wanted to point out a pattern of these two women and their relationship to David. A bit of trivia, it is noted that Michal, who seems to be one of a handful of the most fully realized women in the Old Testament, actually has a “speaking part” with the men in her life. Michal has an older sister and she was originally promised to David.  But if you dig hard enough, there was probably an unspoken sisterly rival. The older sister was married off to another of Saul’s political allies and Michal, just like Marsha’s little sister Jan in the Brady Bunch, got to marry the one they both “loved”. In 1 Samuel 18:20, it says that Saul’s daughter loved David. This is the only time we find in this record regarding David and his “many wives and concubine” that anyone else said “I love you David”.  

The story of David and Bath-sheba is a very sad story and we know the sordid details, so I won’t rehash them here. But I would like to “coax out” just who Bath-sheba is and who she is not. 
  • So who was she: she was a “daughter” of one David’s most loyal and mighty men; of “The Thirty”.  His name was Eliam.
  • She was the “grand daughter” of Ahitophel, one of David’s chief advisors.
  • She was the “wife” of Uriah the Hittite who was also one of David’s most trusted generals and I dare say a comrade in arms. David could have been his best man at his wedding to Bath-sheba.  
  • She was of the tribe of Judah, she was family. You can assume that David had probably come in contact with her during her life as a baby and a young girl.
  • She was a young woman; probably newly married to Uriah, with no children yet. She was a war bride, waiting for her husband to come home from the many battles he fought.
  • She was a house wife; she missed her husband. She was obedient to those in authority over her, like the king. She has probably known him and maybe regards him as an Uncle or another father figure. She trusts him that way.
 So then why was she bathing on her roof, where God and everyone could see her? Here is another interesting tidbit of ancient life; nudity, even public nudity was not the hang up that it is in our times. Although in our time, you would hardly know it with all of the fashion that does little to cover the body. Also, she lived in Jerusalem, a crowed place, where everyone lived almost “on top of one another”. It is the New York of the ancient’s. So for her to take a bath on the roof was a normal thing and there may have been an area designated just for that purpose.  
2 Samuel 11:1-4 
1 And it came to pass, after the year was expired, at the time when kings go forth to battle, that David sent Joab and his servants with him and all Israel; and they destroyed the children of Ammon and besieged Rabbah. But David tarried still at Jerusalem.
And it came to pass in an evening tide that David arose from his bed and walked upon the roof of the king’s house. And from the roof he saw a woman washing herself, and the woman was very beautiful to look upon
And David sent and inquired after the woman. And one said, “Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?”
And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her, for she was purified from her uncleanness; and she returned unto her house.
Look at this language: "and took her". Did these messengers knock at the front door? Did they just barge in and even while she was trying to put on a robe, did they just drag her out of her own home?  Does David remind one of Saul?  What happened with Michal, the first missus?

video courtesy of the "Bible Mini Series"

After David escaped from Michal’s room, he fled and Michal and David did not see each other again.
This is David’s pattern: in 1 Samuel 25:43-44
43 David also took Ahinoam of Jezreel; and they were also both of them his wives.
44But Saul had given Michal his daughter, David’s wife, to Phaltithe son of Laish, which was of Gallim.

So King Saul decided to put an end to David and Michal’s marriage and she married a man named Phaltithe. I know, the question is, why didn't David send for Michal? They could have been like Bonnie and Clyde or worse Romeo and Juliet. During his exile, David married two other women, but I have the feeling that he married these women for their "wealth", David was a poor man. Who brings 200 Philistine foreskins as a bride price? So, in 2 Samuel 3:12-16, after more than 10 years on the run, David finally sends for Michal. I don't know if this was a political maneuver because her brother Ish-bosheth still occupied Saul's throne or was it a protective maneuver because David promised  Saul that he would protect his surviving children. What ever it was, it wasn't the reunion you would expect.
14 And David sent messengers to Ish-bosheth Saul's son, saying : Deliver me my wife Michal, which I espoused to me for an hundred foreskins of the Philistines.
15 And Ishbosheth sent and took her from her husband, even Phaltiel the son of Laish.
16 And her husband went with her along weeping behind her to Bahurim. Then said Abner unto him: Go, return. And he returned.
Look, in verse 15, "and he took her". I don't think this went over well. do you think that David was aware of her marriage to Phaltiel? Did he disregard this information, like he disregarded Uriah the Hittite? I imagine that Michal and her husband did not go quietly. And her husband, bless his heart, followed after her, hysterical and weeping. The writing style of the record of "Bathsheba", seems to "suppress" the voice of Bathsheba. Some have suggested that she came willingly, or she was complicit in the "seduction". I don't think so. There is a record of David's son and daughter Tamar and Amnon that begs to differ.
But later we hear from Michal for the last time, in 2 Samuel 6:16 And as the ark of the Lord came into the city of David, Michal, Saul's daughter looked through a window, and saw King David leaping and dancing before the Lord: and she despised him in her heart. You bet there was a big fight later that evening.This was the last time Michal would be able to speak what was on her heart, and she paid dearly for it, but maybe it gave her a level of vindication. Maybe she spoke what a few of Davids other wives felt, maybe these words and this argument vindicated Bathsheba also.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

OPEN MIKE: THURSDAY

Written on my unofficial bucket list, is a desire to meet Maya Angelou. It's too late, I missed my opportunity to meet her. One of my favorite games is "SIX DEGREES OF SEPARATION from_______(fill in the blank).
Six degrees of separation is the theory that everyone and everything is six or fewer steps away, by way of introduction, from any other person in the world, so that a chain of "a friend of a friend" statements can be made to connect any two people in a maximum of six steps
She passed away last Wednesday and as I was reading her biography, it was noted that she came from a small town called Stamps, Arkansas. I recently found out that my grandmother Elizabeth was from that little town also. So two degrees of separation from Maya Angelou via my grandmother; and now they can meet each other in Heaven. ( I do believe in Heaven, and rainbows and sunbeams too)
What a great person she was and she lived a full life, even to the end at 86.





Dr Angelou talks about "Being a rainbow for others"

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

WHOSE DAUGHTER ARE YOU?

Imagine having your entire life story told in 6 lines in an all time best selling book; in the world. But imagine this, that you, as a woman, would have a biography of sorts detailed in 6 verses in the book of Genesis, one of the most important books in the Bible.  What would one have to do, to get this honorable mention? You would be hard pressed to "read between the lines" I am sure. 
What if your story was wedged in between one of the most dramatic love stories since “Gone with the Wind”? Your name is mentioned along with one of the most prominent couples in the bible besides Adam and Eve; Abraham and Sarah. Their story set the tone for the entire book. When Abraham’s family tree is detailed; he has 2 brothers and 2 sister’s-in law, only one sister is named; Milcah. 
Genesis 11:29 Then Abram and Nahor took wives: the name of Abram’s wife was Sarai, and the name of Nahor’s wife, Milcah, the daughter of Haran the father of Milcah and the father of Iscah.
Did you notice how Milcah was introduced; “the daughter” of Haran; the father of Milcah and the father of Iscah.” Abraham’s wife Sarai isn’t introduced like that. I believe that she and her husband were probably part of the "kin-folk" that traveled with Abraham and Sarah when they left Ur. Further down in the journey, one brother Haran died, and Terah their father turned back to idolatry and later died alone with his "strange gods". But no mention of what happened to Milcah and Nahor. Maybe like Lot, they wanted their own "piece of the rock" and found a nice piece of land and settled on it.  
I would speculate that they had great wealth also, because the covenant that was extended to Abraham included them. 

When Abraham’s son Isaac was almost 40 years old, Abraham started to plan his marriage. He did not want his son to marry any of the "daughters of the Caananitte's or even the Hittite's", he wanted to find a "daughter" of the covenant. He received this information about his brother Nahor’s family.
Genesis 22:20 Now it came to pass after these things that it was told Abraham, saying, “Indeed Milcah also has borne children to your brother Nahor:
And once again, the genealogy of his sister in law’s family was given:
Genesis 22:23 And Bethuel begot Rebekah; These eight Milcah bore to Nahor, Abraham’s brother.
Wow, we see a new name, Rebekah; who is Milcah’s granddaughter.So Abraham sent his right hand man Eleazer, to pay a visit his brother and his sister in law Milcah. He was interested in this new daughter named Rebekeh.
Genesis 24:15 And it happened, before he had finished speaking, that behold, Rebekah, who was born to Bethuel, son of Milcah, the wife of Nahor, Abraham’s brother, came out with her pitcher on her shoulder. 
Genesis 24:  24 So she said to him, “I am the daughter of Bethuel, Milcah’s son, whom she bore to Nahor
Genesis 24:47 Then I asked her, and said, ‘Whose daughter are you?’ And she said, ‘The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son, whom Milcah bore to him.’ So I put the nose ring on her nose and the bracelets on her wrists.
This is how Milcah and Rebekah will be remembered in history; they were Daughters. I have pondered often what is the significance of being a “Daughter”.  I grew up in the South and a common introduction of children and adults went like this:  This is: So and So’s granddaughter, her mother is “So and So”, and so on . It is a brief but important genealogy in what seems to be a casual greeting.  Recently my neighbor invited me to a prayer breakfast at her church. I was excited to go but I was a little concerned about not knowing anyone except my neighbor. As I was standing in a very long breakfast line, I met two ladies, and one of them looked familiar. We introduced ourselves, and we each asked the other about our hometowns.  One of the ladies came from my very own home town in Louisiana. She had lived across the street from the Elementary School I attended and also her kids. I found out that her kids also attended the same middle school and high school as I did, and around the same time frame. At that point we both screamed and asked the same questions: "What is your maiden name, your mother’s name, your grandmother’s name? Awesome, it was the beginning a new friendship. I had an impression that in Heaven, when we meet our ancestors, this may be the type of conversation we will have, and we will bring our friends along too, because they are family too.

In Mark 5:25-34,there is another record of a "daughter"whose story seems to be “wedged in”. If you noticed, this scripture did not have a proper introduction for her, in Mark 5:25 And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years. She has no name, no “family history”, she is only known by her condition; the woman with the issue of blood who touches the garment of Jesus. You know the story, he turns around and asks the question “Who touched me?”  She did, an anonymous woman who no one had paid any attention to. She had been practically crawling on the ground, she was considered “untouchable”. Even though her goal was to feel better and to be healed, I am sure deep down she craved a “restoration” of who she really was. She was “miles” away from her ancestors Milcah and Rebekah. In verse 34, Jesus does something unique: And he said to her “Daughter, thy faith has made the whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague”. This had the same implication as “Welcome to the family, we have missed you so much".  God doesn't want us to be anonymous anymore.

The other day I was at the grocery store and the lady who checked me out had a very unusual name. It was spelled Binizit and I asked her what her name meant. She said it meant "Daughter" in Arabic. I thought, how unusual. But I realized that "Daughter" is our name for the eternities. We as women were given this name, Daughter as a Title, as a Duty,and as a privilege. Or else how can we develop a mother heart for those children, not our own? How can we become teachers, and leaders and even followers, if we cannot manifest the gift of being known as Daughter?

And finally, if the course of the Lord is one eternal round,another "wedge" in modern scripture is one of my favorites in Doctrine and Covenants 25:1-3. This is a personal revelation from the Savior to Emma Smith. It is a love letter and  I love her. I feel like she is our "patron Saint". Doctrine and Covenants 25 is a record of a unique and personal and intimate one sided conversation. A revelation just for Emma and in retrospect if you ponder the words and meaning of the revelation, it applies to all of God's daughters. The unique thing is that Jesus is speaking and He pronounces her "my daughter", just like the woman who touched the hem of his garment. 
Doctrine and Covenants 25:1-3
1 Hearken unto the voice of the Lord your God, while I speak unto you, Emma Smith, my daughter; for verily I say unto you, all those who receive my gospel are sons and daughters in my kingdom
2 A revelation I give unto you concerning my  will; and if thou art faithful and walk in the paths of virtue before me, I will preserve thy life, and thou shall receive an inheritance in Zion.
3 Behold, thy sins are forgiven thee, and thou art an elect lady, whom I have called.

This year marks the 100th celebration of Mother's Day. I have always loved celebrating this day. I am the only daughter of Ruth, who was the youngest daughter of Clothiel. We are daughters of our Heavenly Father. These were words that I had never heard applied to me before I heard them from Missionarys. I have two mothers. My mom passed away 4 years ago, but I believe that my very own loving Heavenly Father knew I would come to that day unprepared. My dad had remarried , and his wife is now my step mother. It's funny, a lot of people may not care for their step parents, at any age, but I have known this lady all of my life and she has always loved me and my brother. I am her daughter now. 
Happy Mother's day to my Sister -Daughter, my Sister -Moms, my Sisters.
My mom and dad














Tuesday, May 13, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: diary of two mad black mormons


"You've read the title, and now you're scratching your head, wondering if this book is for real, right? 
It is.
Yes, the authors are bona fide Mormons.  And hilarious, too! They call themselves  "Sista's in Zion" (right inner flap)

Have you heard of these sisters? I was first introduced to them via their blog "SISTA'S IN ZION". They also have a weekly Radio broadcast. This is their "Diary". They are both converts to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. This is how they met:
"Okay, now we'll tell you about us.
In the beginning: Genesis'
No really, Genesis is where we met; it's a support group for Black Mormons. Yeah we know this is starting to sound crazy, but it's not what you think. The Genesis Group is an official auxiliary organization of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS Church) for African American members of the Church, their families and their friends."
So after we both moved to Utah and wondered where all the black people were, we found some of them and each other at Genesis." page 44
I really enjoyed reading this book, it reads like a diary. The Sista's call themselves Sister Laurel and Sister Beehive, which is hilarious in itself. They share some really personal stories and always with a dose of humor. I hope you will read this really funny and heartwarming book, with 221 pages and 7 chapters.
Hallelujah Holla Back

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(courtesy of Deseret books)