Sunday, July 10, 2016

Hanah

Dogs' lives are too short. Their only fault, really.
~Agnes Sligh Turnbull

Our dog Hanah has been fast getting to the point she cannot use her back legs well to walk and just this week she began needing assistance going up and down steps. It seems the end of her life is now at hand. Of the dogs we have had, Hanah latched on to me more than any, probably because she was trained by a woman who had similar features, so I was her alpha. I did not take to Hanah as easily as she did to me, although I often thought it funny when my husband, who is usually seen as the alpha in our home, would give an order and Hanah would look to me for the final approval.

Hanah was Schutzhund trained so we had to command her in German mostly, although she also remembered some Czech commands from her homeland. She was brought from Czechoslovakia by a breeder/trainer in Ohio, the one I resemble, where she was further trained. Unfortunately, she has always been a very hyper dog and a bit clumsy even though well past the puppy years. She had been sold to an older couple who found her too much for them and brought back to the breeder within a few weeks. She also worked as a border patrol dog in Texas for some years but again was sent back to the breeder because she was having problems with her eyes. You can read about more about that in Who Let the Dog Out?

This picture is of her when we went to north Georgia in October last fall in her calmer state, or a bit worn out, perhaps. You would never have known that Hanah's nickname became Tail of Destruction, but it sometimes was Head of Destruction or Body of Destruction or just plain Dog of Destruction. I honestly cannot tell you how may times in her exuberance that she knocked things over with her tail, or turn too fast and hit her head into a corner of the wall or furniture, or just practically knocked me down on the stairway. She always had this habit of wanting to go before me so she did not follow me as much as walked fast to get in front of me and then stop or turn to see where I was going from a particular pivotal point. If I was going straight without stopping also, I often nearly tripped over her. She had a true knack for being in the way and I do not think I have ever said "move" so much to all the pets of my life summed up as I have to Hanah. I just never could get her to follow or even just stay along side of me, unless I put her back into her duty mode to make her "foos" (heel).

Our time with Hanah has been short because she was six years old, the height of a GSD's prime, when she became a part of our family. Now she is thirteen. As she aged, her hyper activity calmed down some. I used to say I could just tap a toe lightly and she would be on her paws ready to go. Honestly, any move I made she would jump up as if on duty. She did not do this with my husband or daughter so much.

Although she loved to chase things in the begining, she has not been a very playful dog, everything seem to be about duty with her. I would remind her that she was retired and to relax. She always followed me from room to room, mostly trying to get a head of me, but with her hyper activity and clumsiness, I found that irritating much of the time. She always has looked to see where I was; if my husband fed her, as soon as she scarfed down her food, she would be searching for me if I was not in sight. Whenever I would go outside to garden without her, she would look out the windows for me, going back and forth until she could see me, but for the last couple of months she would lie by the front door as that is the one I use the most. Although the past couple of years I have enjoyed her more relaxed attitude much more where I can step over her now and then, now I am realizing that the past few months, she is not just more relaxed but incapable of doing what she used to do.

Funny how the very things that irritated me are now the things I am beginning to miss her doing, but that is how it is with loved ones.

My Lord, thank you for the times we have had together with Hanah.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Fighting Weeds to Fighting Infection

A weed is a plant that has mastered every survival skill except for learning how to grow in rows. ~Doug Larson

What happened this week was not in my plans. My plans included repairing and painting the cabinet in the master bathroom, while my husband was gone so he did not have to deal with the disorganization. I could have, should have, and would have had it all done, hopefully, before his return and most things back in place, but that did not happen.

Monday was Independence Day and I woke up to being called to my herb garden in the cool of the morning, although it was not all that cool. There is a spreading, low growing weed that I finally identified as Virginia buttonweed, and Virginia can have it back! I know it looks almost pretty in the picture I choose to post here, but it really is as invasive as mint and harder to get rid of! I have been fighting against this weed for the last few years that makes me unhappy every time I look out the window or water my plants, so I am determined to take out completely this year, but it is a very tough weed to eradicate. It is nearly impossible without tearing up the entire garden covering it for a year or two and then starting over, but even then...?

I would dig it all out and have but it has these runner roots or rhizomes that are three to six inches down, so they are growing even under my stepping stones and borders, and I have found from experience I don't get every bit of them, they come back with a vengeance. I find that the leafy parts pull out easily from the rhizomes so it just grows back. Since I have identified it, I have read that everything I have experienced with this weed is true: Virginia buttonweed can even reproduce from small pieces of the stems or roots. I have had to carefully paint an herbicide on its leaves on the ones in the pathway area were I do not plant the edibles but just pathway fill-in plants that have not completely filled in yet, thanks largely to this weed. That actually worked and they have not come back, as much as I hate using chemicals, between this weed and poison ivy, I have an appreciation of them more now.

I was digging out the beds...again! Then laying down a thick layer of newspaper to cut of their sunlight, even though that only cuts them down in the numbers I see and not their roots so does not seem to kill them off. Moving some plants to other areas just because and planting some that have been sitting in pots for weeks. Of course I only got about a third of the garden done, but it is a very good start.

While I was working in the garden, I noticed that an area on my neck that was a bit sore the day before, which I thought was from lying wrong, was becoming quite sore. Every time I bent over I could feel it and a lymph gland was swollen, but usually these things correct themselves in a day or two and I ignored it because I was gardening! (Yeah, I really like it that much even though the heat of the day approached.) Later we all ate and went to see Independence Day: Resurgence in 3-D.

The neighborhood was filled with fireworks that night. Although less than the night before, it was enough to keep us up later. On the morrow, Tuesday morning, my husband left for the airport to work out of state and I prepared for our errand day, but the Princess had not been able to get to sleep until around 3:00 AM, so she was not getting up even after I woke her twice and then she complained of not feeling well. Then I just gave in and decided that we could try move her piano lesson to another day this week, as it is easier to do now since her teacher has fewer students in the summer.

It was a good thing I did because by noon I had a fever. The soreness in my neck was probably an infected lymph gland and now my immune system was trying to fight the infection full on. The fever battled on for the next two days while I stayed in bed for the most part. The fever was not particularly high but the dizziness was quite disconcerting. I do not think I had an inner ear infection, but because this lymph gland was not draining, I believe the inner ear was also not draining fluid, which added to the dizziness and not quite nausea but certainly not hungry feeling.

Thursday I had no fever and the swelling had gone down, but I still did not feel up to doing much of anything. I still got dizzy when I was up so I canceled the piano lesson. Today I am mostly fine and annoyed that I made no progress on the master bathroom all this week, but I hope to do a few things today. I am thinking of painting a bit of herbicide on that bottonweed and looking forward to welcoming home my husband.

My Lord, thank you for the days of good health so that I can garden, and work my house as I tend to take it for granted.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Personal Prophesy and Phariseeism

Prophecy and miracles argue the imperfection of the state of the church, rather than its perfection. For they are means designed by God as a stay or support, or as a leading string to the church in its infancy, rather than as means adapted to it in its full growth. -Jonathan Edwards

A couple of weeks ago, when my husband was still in Florida helping with his mother, I went to the associate pastor after the service to get our gift assessment tests as they were handed out the week before when we did not go but were preparing to leave for Florida to help my mother-in-law after her fall. At that time he told me that he had been given a word about me during the service. The first part is something I have heard many times, from God directly and people. He told me that I was spiritually mature beyond my years. At that point I wondered if the message was more for him than me, but later I wondered if that was to get my attention and be willing to accept the next part.

The exact words escape me, but it the gist of it was that the gift of prophecy would be heightened in me. I wish I could fully explain my deeper concerns and hesitations about prophecy, particularly while we are in this church. First, there are those in the office of being a prophet and then there are those who have a prophetic gift. The first, I believe, speaks with authority (of the good and the bad) to right the wrongs of the church or a nation and it is a necessary but seldom welcomed message. I am thinking of Nathan with David, Jonah with Ninevah, etc.

The prophetic gift is a bit less defined...and yet leave it to people to add definition. The church we are attending has a school and prophecy is one of the courses offered. A few months ago, I sat in on a three-Sunday-mornings introduction to the course and here are some of the things that were told to us that highly concerned me:

  • Personal prophecy is ALWAYS edifying. If it is not edifying then it is not from God.
  • You are to speak in tongues to activate the gift of prophecy.
  • Once you take the prophecy course and are approved, you MUST be on the Prophetic Team in service to the church, with the exception of students from other churches.
  • Parking lot prophecy is NEVER allowed. These are words spoken outside of proper spiritual oversight, namely the church. It must be submitted to church leadership before it is given.

My first thoughts were: "I am just not seeing this list in the Bible."

My second thoughts were: "No. What? Why?" and then "You have got to be kidding, right?"

Even after some prayer, my thoughts were in that same perpetual loop, because I just cannot believe this list is from God. No supportive scriptures were given that specifically addressed these rules. This is church leaders trying to govern men and their sin natures coming through in the name of a spiritual gift. Worse, to me this is modern Phariseeism.

The last Sunday of the introduction classes, some members of the prophetic team came in to give each of us our personal prophecy. They were instructed to pray in tongues and then told when to stop and prophesy. The first woman that called on me said that God wanted me to know He has has hand on me and that He has never left me. I translated that to mean that even though I was finally feeling that all that had been going on with the Princess and our family was calming down and that I had calmed down considerably, I still was dealing with aftermath of the storm. I knew that my expectations of homeschooling my daughter had changed and my trust in and reliance on God was stronger than it had been in the past year.

Another woman came forward telling me not to sit down, She told me that she could she me just warring in prayer for my family and that I seemed quiet but a lot was going on in me. She got the words "quiet storm," and said I was a quiet storm and that I was "dangerous," which made everyone in the class giggle. I assumed that she meant that when I go after something in prayer, I do not let up until the war is won. This was how it had been from September of last year up to just weeks before then.

Now, my first thoughts were that neither of these messages were particularly about my future. They were more about where I was presently and who I am. I would consider them to be more like words of knowledge, but that is just me. Personally, I do not think all messages from God have to be categorized, but again leave it to people....

Putting aside my personal prophecies and going back to the list, I am struggling with the rule that all personal prophecy must only be edifying. I disagree. Nathan approached David quite wisely so that David condemned himself, but it was not edifying, it was to point out his sin, and there was a punishment for his deed, the loss of his first son with Bathsheba. I feel that prophecy, even personal prophecy can be corrective. I think their concern is that personal prophecy has been used abusively: telling a person he should give x-amount of dollars to the church or a ministry, he should take a job that in the end works out disastrously, he should marry a certain person and it is a horrible relationship, and things like that.

I flatly do not believe that the gift of prophecy must be activated whether by tongues or any other method. Now as to preparing your heart to hear the Lord clearly, obviously that is necessary, but I still do not think it is done by any certain method. Some people just walk with God and some people prepare by praying alone in silence and some by fasting and perhaps some by tongues. It is not the method, it is what prepares the heart and there is absolutely no place in the Bible that states tongues is required. How many prophets were there before Pentecost?

I might have been open to taking the course—well, most likely not after I sat in on the three introduction classes—but, after reading the contract for the course requiring the student to be on the Prophetic Team, I definitely was hearing "no" from God. I probably would have not passed anyway, because I just did not believe in the Pharisee-like add-ons that they would teach.

Now the last one, parking lot prophecy, I would get that if someone was given a prophecy for the church that it should be confirmed or one had been abusing the use of prophecy to control people, he should submit to the church's authority for correction. However, a friend of mine, who I met through the church, has this gift and asked if it was considered incorrect for her to give a prophetic word to a waitress as she had done just that week. The answer was that she should have submitted it first. Sorry, but no! God is the authority over the church. He provides the moment of contact. So, if He leads me to give a prophetic word to someone so strongly I have no doubt or it comes out of my mouth without a thought (which has happened a few times), I am not going stop and to take it to a church leadership committee for preapproval!

And...at the same time, we were told that it is okay if we get it wrong, so we should not be discouraged by that or not use it because of that. Isn't this a conflicting message?

I have this gift of just knowing the path a person is taking and of what lies in his future, perhaps it is spiritual wisdom, but I cannot say that is all edifying. It is more one of giving some assurance, pointing out choices, and guiding. I want what God wants for the person and to help them get there, but it is not always a message that gives the warm fuzzies. So, here I am again thinking against the grain of the church, wondering which is right, and what I am supposed to do with it either way, but especially if I am right.

Ironically, only my friend signed up for the course so it was cancelled. I had been given a vision when I first saw the woman leading the class and teaching the course. I would have liked to tell her about it, but I also know she is not open to receiving it yet. I do know that I have been constantly reminded that my ministry, at this time, is not within any church.

My Lord, thank you for keeping Your Hand on me and that You have never left me. All that is good in me comes from You; I can take no credit for it. Guide me continually to use all that I am wisely.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Testing For Gifts

God tests and proves us by the common occurrences of life. It is the little things which reveal the chapters of the heart. -Ellen G. White

My church asked us all to do a gift assessment test to be handed in so that they have a better idea of where to place people in service so it really is more for the church leaders to know us than we know ourselves, at least from my point of view. I have to say the idea alone causes me to have two conflicting views: First, I think such tests tend to categorize too little and too much at the same time. Second, I am always curious about my own results anyway. Having taken the Modified Houts Questionaire, I have a few more specific views to add.

There are four answers: much, some, little, and not at all, and how a statement is framed can make such a difference in the answer. For instance, here is one that does not happen to me much: "When in a group, I am often the one others often look to for vision and direction." I added the emphasis here because it frames the statement. This was referring to the gift of faith.

Now on other evaluations my results on faith have been quite high. In fact, close friends would say it is one of my most pronounced and strongest of gifts. At the same time, I pretty much am looked over when in a group so this happens little. Now after people come to know me, that statement is very true. This statement is not descriptive of recent years because I have not really been in service within any church and gotten to be known by other people. It can be an advantage yet a bit on the strange side when you know the core of a person before they get to know you and you, them for interests in common. In the recent past, my Lord has guiding my ministry to be not as much within the church as outside of it. My score on faith was 12 out of 15. Had the adverbial phraseyou did know I homeschool, right?—not been a part of this statement, I would have answered differently. I decided to tweak the adverbial phrase in my mind and go with what a group of my friends would say, so now I am at 14 on faith.

Another one that messed with my mind was discernment. In other assessments I have been particularly high in that also, but not so with this one evaluation and again it was the framing of the statements. Now, I am empathic, not a gift so named in the Bible, but if I were to categorize it, it is a unique combination of knowledge, discernment, healing, and perhaps intercession, but certainly being highly receptive to the spiritual realm and its truths. The first statement read: "Others in the church have noted that I was able to see through phoniness before it was evident to other people." That is definitely me whether others in the church recognize it or not. That has been confirmed to me time and time again. However, another question in discernment read: "I can tell whether a person speaking in tongues is genuine." I honestly do not recall any time that I knew someone was faking it and maybe that is because I have never come across anyone that was yet...?

As an empath, I can know much about a person's physical, spiritual, and emotional state. I can and have been able to discern the spiritual state of a person, know when a person is lying, hiding something, willfully sinning, even when a person is deceiving himself such as believing he is Christian when he is not—not yet, anyway.

So in the end, with a few tweaks in my perception of the statements regarding faith and discernment—that is not being so literal and staying within the spirit of its meaning of each statement. My score come out as follows:

15 - Wisdom  This one really surprised me!
14 - Teaching
14 - Knowledge
14 - Faith
14 - Healing
13 - Prophecy
13 - Discerning of Spirits
13 - Intercession
11 - Exhortation
11 - Miracles 
10 - Evangelism
10 - Hospitality
 9 - Pastor
 8 - Giving
 8 - Helps
 8 - Mercy
 8 - Administration
 7 - Leadership
 6 - Missionary
 6 - Service
 5 - Voluntary Poverty
 4 - Tongues
 2 - Interpretation
 2 - Exorcism or Deliverance Ministry
 0 - Celibacy

I believe this is pretty accurate, although I am still shaking my head on the wisdom thing.

My Lord, I already know who I am and what You have given me. Thank you for the confirmation.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Stepped on a Crack

Don't step on a crack or you will break your mother's back. -Unknown

Although I backdated the last two posts to when I planned to post them, those precious few of my reading friends know that I had not posted anything for over a month and not much before then either. Now I will tell you a bit about why that happened.

First of all, we had a cool spring with few bugs and I tried to take advantage of it as much as possible, working in my gardens, buying pretty annual and biennial plants, planting and weeding, mixing in compose of bunny berries and worms. I have had a highly aggressive weed take over my herb garden the past couple of years that I have dug out several times and covered the soil with paper bags for months to kill it off but it has a root system that goes deep and spreads. I finally have given up on organic means and began to use chemicals on the ones in the foot path area where I have not planted herbs we would be eating. Maybe my Irish and Scottish mosses will come back in between the stepping stones....? In addition, we are in a drought so I have had to spend extra time and water on keeping my distressed plants thriving.

My husband had to spend two weeks in the United Kingdom for training the first two weeks of June. A week before he left, I decided that I would begin redecorate the master bathroom. It has never been done since we moved here 19 years ago this September, but we have done some things along the way.

For one, we changed out the light fixtures. Everything in this house was brass and I dislike brass, especially with a contemporary style, so the brass light fixtures were the first to go when I found bargain priced replacements that I liked with a dark rust faux look. Besides that, all the brass knobs and hinges are worn and discolored so I am quite happy to replace them.

Two, we had bought metal ornament wall plates, hooks (rather than towel racks), other wall fixtures, and a wood curio cabinet years ago that all matched. They are all an off-white.

I know it sounds like these two different colors will not work together, but they will when I have it completed.

Now I have to say here that I have a problem when it comes to redecorating: I am the reverse Scotty of the original Star Trek. Scotty would tell the captain that whatever was wrong would take something like two weeks to fix, but somehow he would do it in two hours. Well, I have this idealistic dream that it will only take me two weeks to do a room and it always takes two months...at least, even working on it over eight to twelve hours a day most days. In my defense, the previous owner painted the walls with a sponged on faux technique. She did it poorly but I now understand why she chose it: It did a very good job at hiding all the unfinished detail work that builder left and the owner did not want to do, like little pock marks from bubbles in the plaster that were not plastered over and then sanded smooth. Whenever I do a room for the first time in this house, it takes far longer than it should because of things like this. When we took the wall paper off of walls in the room that now belong to the Princess, we found the plaster was rough and not sealed correctly so half way up the wall all the way around the room, the plaster had to be redone, finished, and sealed. So it goes, but later for details of the bathroom redo.

I did get the wall for the light fixture painted with two coats and most of the sanding of the walls finished and the plaster dust cleaned up Saturday before my husband would be arriving home so that the bathroom was usable at least. I had called his mother that morning but she did not answer and she did not call back, which was odd. A bit later she sent out an email to a group of contacts that she had not been at her computer and probably would not be for a while as she had fallen on Wednesday and was in too much pain to move around much.

My husband, of course, at that moment was still over the Atlantic Ocean and would not know this until we picked him up, most likely. Had she told us this on Wednesday, he could have changed his flight to check on her and I might have driven down and met him there—this was only one of the many more "had she just..." yet to be known to us.

So, he called her that night and found she had been clipping some bushes and tripped over the garden edging when backing out. After the fall she was unable to get up so she crawled over to fence calling for her neighbor. The neighbor called the fire department because that is no charge, when an ambulance would be—the elderly on Medicare have this all figured out. The firemen got her on her feet and she felt a bit sore but okay. By Friday she was in so much pain that she would only sit and sleep in the recliner, use a walker to get to the bathroom and kitchen, and was not doing anything else. My husband suggested for her to ice the area. Had she just either gone into the emergency room or seen a doctor that day, she would probably not have drawn out what was going to be very painful days for her all alone.

My husband did not plan to go see her and, in his defense, the long flight and time zone difference usually takes about two days to feel completely normal. So the next morning after he slept, I suggested we needed to go see her, but not to tell her we were coming. Instead of going to church we made arrangements with our housesitter, who thankfully was free until Thursday. My husband mowed the lawn and cleaned the rabbit cages while I took all the bathroom things back out of the guestroom, did laundry, and made our raw dog food mix to take with us. We all packed and left on Monday morning to drive to Florida with our dog along. The bad part was my husband was supposed to have Monday and Tuesday as comp days, but the office scheduled him to be an account on Tuesday and they could not change it, so he had to fly out on Tuesday morning and would not be returning until Wednesday late afternoon. I would have two days with his mother while she was in pain trying to convince her to get past her thinking she would be all right with a little rest and over her fear of finding out it was something more serious—which, being empathic, I already knew was the case.

We gave her therapy with my frequency device that I have used for many years but she was not responding as would be typical of a misalignment of the spine at L1, which was the vertebra I knew had the problem. I kept urging her that if we went to a chiropractor that we could at least get x-rays to know what the injury was, at this point the injury was over a week old. She finally agreed and we took her to one that some friends of hers go to on Thursday. As soon as the chiropractor said he was concerned about a compression fracture, I knew that was exactly it. Next day, Friday, we returned for the findings and she definitely had a compression fracture at L1 and the intense pain she felt was caused by the instability of several microfractures.



Now this is not a chiropractic issue, so we would have to find a doctor that performs vertebroplasty, which is an injection of a substance into the vertebra that "cements" the microfractures within fifteen minutes. The doctor they suggested was booked for three weeks and required that her primary doctor refer her. The problem there was her primary doctor is not in the office on Fridays but in the hospital in surgery, because he is actually a cardiology specialist and surgeon who had treated her husband for his heart condition. I called around a few places while praying. One said they were booked to September! However, that same one suggested another doctor who would most likely be able to see her much sooner.

I called the number she gave me and answered that it was an imaging facility. I explained I was given this number for Dr. B. and she assured me I had the right place. Now I begin to explain the situation, the fall, we are in from out of state and cannot stay very long, her primary doctor is out of the office so he cannot refer her, etc. The first thing the lady said was no referral was necessary and she may be able to fit her in that day as the doctor was coming in for an emergency. So, within the hour we had forms filled out and MRIs where being taken. Mom was put as ease when they told us that her primary doctor and Dr. B. were very good friends. They would have done the procedure that day had it not been for the blood thinner medication, but it was scheduled for Monday morning. If ever there was a time that God moved mountains when we needed them moved, this certainly was one of those times, but we stressed to Mom that if she had been living closer to us, we would have had her in to be checked out immediately after the fall and we think it did scare her a bit as she is now at least considering moving.

I had driven home on Saturday with the Princess and our dog because our housesitter had already started sitting at another client's house, but was returning to feed the cats and rabbits as well as water the plants. My husband hoped to stay the week but the office wanted him back and Mom was recuperating as expected so he flew out to North Carolina to work on Wednesday and flew home Friday. After the procedure, the worse of the pain would decrease immediately and Mom would not cause more damage with normal movements.

Since beginning the bathroom redecoration, I was a bit more tired than usual, but this unplanned trip on top of it really wiped me out. I have been very tired ever since. In fact, I still cannot get my head wrapped around this only happened last week! Our vacation seems like it was six months ago and Mom's injury two months ago and we had been there weeks rather than just one. I am just plain worn out!

My daughter left for a Christian youth camp for this week on Monday, my husband worked from home Monday and Tuesday but he is flying out this morning, and I need to begin planning our homeschool curriculum because I planned to start back into that after the camp, which may not happen as I hoped because I hoped to be further along with the bathroom before we started and then I have struggling with having physical and mental stamina to deal with just the normal daily stuff. However, my husband and I got a chiropractic adjustment yesterday and since I have been feeling a bit better. So with my husband east working and my daughter south at camp, I am now home all alone with my dog, cats, and the rabbits and that challenging unfinished bathroom—time to get back to work.

My Lord, thank you for moving mountains for us to get Mom's injury treated and please bless her with a quick recovery. Also, my Lord, please restore me.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Imagined Reality

Men should use the men’s bathroom and women should use the women’s bathroom. Just because a man may "feel" like a woman doesn’t mean he should be able to share a bathroom with my daughter, or yours. That used to be called common sense.
-Phil Robertson, patriarch of "Duck Dynasty"

Just before we left on vacation there was a serious transgender bathroom school policies controversy that was all the talk thanks to our end-term president threatening to pull federal funds out of schools that do not comply with his wishes for students to use whichever bathroom and locker room that they identify as their gender. While at the museum, we were in a Christian safe environment but I had begun to ask myself questions. What if my daughter at four years old had told me she was really a boy? What if, indeed. Well, children like to pretend lots of things. Some want to believe they are a super hero and wear costumes day after day and it can last for months in some cases. Even so, these are normal phases.

When a child puts on a superman costume, it is understandable that people will play along, but when that child jumps off a build believing he will fly, that would be going beyond what is normal behavior. Sometimes our playing along is too convincing, too supportive, too accommodating, too attentive, especially when the child has been enabled to alter his perception of reality. My reality check to the flying argument there would be that superman can take off from the ground, so if you cannot jump up and stay in the air from the ground, you are just going to fall going off a building. I remember as a young child jumping off a couple of steps repeatedly for an entire summer in the backyard believing that one of those times I would really fly...didn't happen, but I was determined I could do it just the right way once and I would fly. I even dreamed of flying, so it had to be true!

I do not get why it is demanded of everyone to not only play along with a child's imagination, but to encourage them to the point that they cross over to denying reality or trying to change themselves to fit what they want they believe is their little private reality that no one else sees yet. I remember wishing I was a boy when I was younger because boys were into taking apart bikes and having pocket knifes. It is not that girls cannot do those things, it was just not as common for girls to want to do those things. If I wanted to wear boy clothes and my brother wanted to wear girl clothes, it was for fun, but even with our messed up childhoods and abused hearts, we were not confused about our genders. I just cannot relate with this catering to men who have chosen to change their appearance and welcoming them to use the same public bathroom as my daughter and me. Sorry, but no.

What about the pedofile's little private reality, where a man or woman believes children are capable of consensual sex? Some would say that is completely different. Well, yes and no. They want it to be true and they acted on it as if it were and they were blinded by their own desires to see the harm it caused to others. People would argue that a transgender person does not cause harm to other people. I think that if you talk to the families of most, you would find some deeply hurting and struggling hearts there.

My daughter did tell me one thing when she was four years old. I do not remember what I had said to her, but in the sentence I addressed her as "Child" to which she quipped sternly and quite seriously, "I am not a child, I am a woman!" (It still makes me giggle thinking of how she said it.) She really meant it, maybe for a time she really believed it and wanted me to accept it also, but I still treated her like my four-year-old child. She is still highly imaginative and creativity, but she also has accepted and learned to work through life within this: reality is the reality.

My Lord, this is such a fallen world. How much longer can You endure it?