Trying to raise my kids the best I can

Monday, April 27, 2009

This could be it

I've been watching the flu virus for years, since I read a book about the 1819 flu, waiting for the next big one. This Swine flu, could be it. I'm watching with a morbid fascination. Just to sum up the risk for everyone: flu virus' are generally very deadly or very transmittable. Rarely both. When that combination comes together, it creates a pandemic. I don't have anything prepared right now, but I thought I'd share some suggestions with you: Most importantly, you want some expectorants because that's how this flu kills you- it drowns you. So you'll want to have mucinex and robitussin on hand. Do NOT take a cough suppressant. Also garlic and Goldenseal, hot peppers/hot sauce. To support the immune system: Vitamin C, Echinacea, Astragalus, oregano oil capsules, colloidal silver, probiotics, fruit juices, broths, electrolyte replacements. For hygene purposes, some cheap face masks.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

An experiment

This homeschooling mom did an experiment on how words affect water. It was based on a Japanese dude, Masaru Emoto's, experiments with freezing water, which became beautiful or ugly crystals depending on the positive or negative words spoken to/around it. That's so stupid, right? I thought it was ridiculous and impossible. I tried googling for some proof. I found a ton of people and scientists claiming that it is pseudoscience. But no real experiments disproving it. There are some youtube videos with positive results though. So I had to do the experiment. Just to prove it wrong. Much to my surprise I got the same results! The "hate" jar had mold days before the "love" jar showed any signs of mold. Then I threw out those jars and did it again. And it happened again. Not nearly as dramatically the second time, I imagine, because I wasn't as into it, so I spoke to the jars a lot less. (Lid on the entire time, so no difference in microbe spread). The second time I also did a "neutral" control one, which seemed to grow as much as the hate, which would lead me to believe that "love" is a protection more than "hate" is destructive. don't know/shrug. But, unfortunately, the neutral one was in the dark (in a cupboard so it wouldn't be exposed to the words) and obviously the dark effects mold growth, so I can't really accept those results.

Here are the pictures of my second experiment. (Sorry, I didn't take any of the first. shaking head with sadness) There's white mold on the "hate" that you can't see real well, but in total, hate has about three times the mold as love. I dumped out the jars on this paper just so you could see it more clearly.


This has major implications for the words we speak. This is no surprise to us, Christians, as the Bible makes some pretty bold statements about the power of the tongue. But on a more theoretical level, haven't you noticed that you can just "feel" the negative and positive spirits in people's homes? Whether that's the power of words or spiritual beings or some combination... it's very real.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Today we went to a reenactment



It was a reenactment of the first battle of the Revolutionary War, in Lexington, Massachusetts. I've wanted to go to it for a looong time. My mom used to take us to historical things like that all the time. I got so much out of it as a kid, and I know that boys in particular love those battles. I'm so proud that I finally did it. It's not easy, considering it takes place at 6:00 AM and I'm a night owl.

I picked up my friend's son, who lives near there. The kids were great about the whole thing- even Dimitri- running to the field when we were running late and not complaining when the crowd made it impossible to see. Next year we'll bring a ladder for the kids to climb like other families did. Despite the nearly non-existent view- I'm glad we meant. The boys got to feel the excitement and hear the gun shots and see my enthusiasm.

Afterwards we went back to my bff's house and she had made a lovely breakfast of eggs and sausage and fresh baked muffins and fruit. We leisurely ate and talked and just had the most wonderful time. What a great memory this will make.

Interesting factoid: we lost that battle. :(

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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Weight gain mystery solved.


I haven't been able to lose weight since Saphira was born. In fact, if anything, I'm putting on weight. sigh. So I got a blood glucose monitor to help me lose weight- it's a technique I used when I was a personal trainer. I've also been suspecting that maybe I'm diabetic now. It runs in the family and I've always been borderline. So it came in the mail yesterday and this morning I tested before breakfast and got a 174. Anything over 126 is considered diabetes. So. darn. I guess my body finally crapped out on me and I've got diabetes. And then after breakfast I got a reading of 199. In all my years of testing before, I never got anything over 140! So, yuck. This will only make it much harder to lose weight. That depresses me. Though I guess my body has known that for a year. Now my mind knows too. I made an appointment with my primary care physician. I guess this is good to know before I get pregnant again. And also, I'm wondering if it would explain what's wrong with my finger. It's kind of dried and shrivled and I couldn't figure out why. Maybe it's peripheral artery disease from the diabetes. I'm only thirty!!!! I feel like I'm falling apart!!! But I am determined to get healthy and skinny again, so there is no doubt in my mind that I will.

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Saturday, April 11, 2009

For the last time...

Today was my last clinical ever. Eh-ver! Today, I signed my name on my nurses note with the suffix SN MCC (Student Nurse, Middlesex Community College) for the last time. The next time I sign a nurses note it will have the suffix RN. It's starting to feel real and I'm almost giddy with excitement. Just a little more to go. A final exam, two presentations, an IV lab. In reflection, I can say that Middlesex was a great college. The first semester I posted a lot of frustration with the fundamentals class. Over the two years, though, I can honestly say I learned a lot. And at the community college rate, I doubt there is a better career bargain out there.

It's almost time. I'm actually going to start working on my resume and applying for jobs!!! Is this real? Can someone pinch me?

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Friday, April 10, 2009

Check out the ethics paper I wrote

I've spent the past couple days writing this paper for my nursing issues class. It's called "A nurses role in the encroachment on the rights of pregnant women in America". Check it out. It's thought provoking.

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Sunday, April 05, 2009

hmmm.

OK. I've thought of a possible exception.

I was thinking that the Holy Spirit descending on us at Pentacost is the equivalent to going into the Holy Tabernacle. Because now we can all converse with God ourselves, instead of through a Priest. But the Holy Spirit doesn't "go away" when a women gets her period or touches a body, or any of the other ritual impurities. So, that says to me that ritual purity is no longer a requirement. And in fact, that would go along with
my interpretation of some of the verses I've brought up recently... specifically:

"For he himself is our peace who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility abolishing in his flesh the law with it's commandments and regulations. Ephesians 2:14"


Sooooo? If the curtain to the Holy Tabernacle has been ripped and anyone can go in, that means everyone, right? Even Non-priests. Even Gentiles. Even people who ate a ham sandwich yesterday.


So was there another reason why we would have to be ritually pure?
If not... I think the clean and unclean rules- including Kosher- have been nullified by Jesus' death

(Although I think it strange that he proclaimed this before he died in Mark 7)

Anyway, it's something I can mull over.

The rest of the Torah needs to be observed though.

Thoughts?

And...

I was thinking about the subject of "picking and choosing". The non Torah observant Christians owe an explanation for "picking and choosing". Who decided that the ten commandments are still supposed to be followed? The New Testament only describes four laws that need to be followed: Acts 21:25 "As for the gentiles who have become believers, we have sent a letter with our decision that they should keep away from food that has been sacrificed to idols, from blood, from anything strangled, and from sexual immorality."

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Dissecting the verses that supposedly say Torah observance is no longer necessary

In this post I will refute five Bible verses that Christians use to argue that Torah law is no longer applicable to us.


Verse(s) #1

The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth. For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer. 1 Timothy 4:1-4

Torah Observant point of view:
Paul is addressing asceticism here, the belief that you could get closer to God by denying yourself worldly pleasures. In verse three when he says "certain foods" he is talking about "foods". To qualify as a "food" it could not be one of the forbidden meats in the Old Testament. Those wouldn't have been considered food to begin with.

An equivalent false interpretation is: I can eat poison mushrooms and Adam and Eve could eat from The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, as long as it's done with Thanksgiving.


Verse(s) #2:
Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, "Listen to me, everyone, and understand this. Nothing outside a man can make him 'unclean' by going into him. Rather, it is what comes out of a man that makes him 'unclean.'"...After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about this parable. "Are you so dull?" he asked. "Don't you see that nothing that enters a man from the outside can make him 'unclean'? For it doesn't go into his heart but into his stomach, and then out of his body." He went on: "What comes out of a man is what makes him 'unclean.' For from within, out of men's hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and make a man 'unclean.' Mark 7:14-15, 17-23

Torah Observant point of view:
The Pharisees had been arguing with Jesus about ritual purity, not Kosher foods. There is nothing to suggest that when Jesus was talking about "food" he was redefining it to include un-kosher meat. The true subject matter of this Bible verse was spiritual prioritizing, which the Pharisees had been doing incorrectly. Jesus was not contradicting the ceremonial laws, but instead demoting their importance. The unclean foods under discussion were not the forbidden foods of the Torah, but instead the tradition of handwashing before eating. "And when [the Pharisees] saw some of his disciples eat bread with defiled, that is to say, with unwashen hands, they found fault"


Verse #3:
For it doesn't go into his heart but into his stomach, and then out of his body." (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods "clean.") Mark 7:19

Torah Observant point of view:
The parentheses isn't even in all translations. It was an editorial comment that was added after the fact. Whoever added it, didn't make a very convincing argument for overturning the Torah, since he used the Greek word broma, which simply means food. The Greek word, kreas, "meat—animal flesh" would have been far more appropriate.


Verse(s) #4
Some people are still so accustomed to idols that when they eat such food they think of it as having been sacrificed to an idol, and since their conscience is weak, it is defiled. But food does not bring us near to God; we are no worse if we do not eat, and no better if we do.
Torah Observant point of view:
One might think that the bolded part is negating the Torah command to not eat meat sacrificed to idols. Why then, would the New Testament uphold these laws in Acts and 1 Corinthians?
You are to abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality. Acts 15:29
...the sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons, not to God, and I do not want you to be participants with demons. You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord's table and the table of demons. 1 Corinthians 10:20-21

So, the intent of this verse, seems to be to affirm "faith over works" but not to overturn the importance of works.This is a repeated message of the New Testament.


Verse(s) #5
Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called "uncircumcised" by those who call themselves "the circumcision" (That done in the body by the hands of men) - remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, with hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility abolishing in his flesh the law with it's commandments and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace, and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross... Ephesians 2:11-16
Torah Observant point of view:
This verse is really about Gentiles uniting with Jews, being adopted into the family of God. The "law, commandments and regulations" it is referring to are all the ones that previously separated Jews and Gentiles. Not only were Gentiles excluded from the Jewish community, but in the Old Testament there was a hierarchy within the Jewish community: Isreaelites, Levites, and Preists, each able to get a little closer to the Holy Tabernacle. Something miraculous happened the moment Jesus died though. The heavy curtain that separated everyone from the Holy Tabernacle ripped in half!! God was clearly telling everyone that we could now go in ourselves!
And Jesus cried again with a loud voice and gave up His spirit. And at once the curtain of the sanctuary of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom... Matthew 27:50-51

When he talks about destroying the law, he isn't talking about earthly consequences of the law.  Does gravity still make things fall? Yes. Do liers still lose their reputation? Yes. Do thieves still have to repay their debt when they are caught? Yes. Because Earthly consequences were not broken by Jesus' blood. Those aren't very important anyway. The spiritual consequences were the important ones. But we are under those consequences no more! Jesus ripped the curtain and invited everyone in: Not just the priests, but also the Levites. Not only the Levites, but also the rest of the Isrealites. Not only the Isrealites, but all the Gentiles may come in now too! The law is still relevant. The eternal consequence of breaking the law is no more. 


Here's another verse that talks about the tabernacle rules.

For the gifts and sacrifices that the priests offer are not able to cleanse the consciences of the people who bring them. For that old system deals only with food and drink and various cleansing ceremonies— physical regulations that were in effect only until a better system could be established. Hebrews 9:9, 10 (NLT)
Jesus established the better system. Now we can all go into the Holy of Holies.

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Verses that uphold Torah Observant Christianity

I'll start with two verses that uphold the Torah Observant point of view. I have a diaper to change and a treadmill that's calling my name, but later tonight the juicy stuff... debunking the verses that have been used for centuries to claim that we don't have to follow the Torah law any more. (dun*dun*dun!- sound effect)

Matthew 5:17-19
"Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven."

Romans 3: 28-31
For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from observing the law. Is God the God of Jews only? Is he not the God of Gentiles too? Yes, of Gentiles too, since there is only one God, who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through that same faith. Do we, then, nullify the law by this faith? Not at all! Rather, we uphold the law.




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Friday, April 03, 2009

Major change in my life!!!

I've spent hours and hours discussing the subject online with my friends and I've made a huge decision to become a "Torah Observant" Christian!! This means that I will try to uphold the rules put forth in the "Old Testament". I am convinced that I've been missing out on a part of God's blessing for me by glossing over the Torah. I am also convinced that the New Testament never says to stop observing the Torah!! It's a pretty big revelation. And an indictment on the modern Christian church for really "missing the mark" on their interpretation. I can't believe that in all my years, "Torah Observant" was never presented as an option. I mean, I was taught that some Christians are "premillennialists" and others are "Amillennial" and still others "Postmillennial" I was taught the argument for women preachers and the argument against women preachers. I was taught the young earth creation theory and the evolution theory and Intelligent Design. But never once, in 30 years, multiple churches, youthgroups, Christian schools, was it ever presented that Torah Observant was an option.

I'm sure many of my readers are skeptical of this interpretation. Get yourselves a good nights sleep, because tomorrow I will post my Biblical analysis!!!


These are some things I am particularly excited about, as I start this new journey.

#1 I am excited to be living "more deliberately" for the Lord. I like that I have to put a little more thought into my choices, to be sure that everything is edifying the Lord. I like that these choices might make me stand out as different, maybe a testimony to the Lord.

#2 I'm excited to dive into the Torah law and study them with a new enthusiasm. Knowing now that these laws apply to me, I am so much more interested!! I can ruminate over how I will uphold them. And for the ones that I cannot uphold (like the ones for men only) I can think about what the intent is behind the law so that I can imitate it in my life.

#3 I am excited to learn about all the holidays that I've been missing out on celebrating. In recent years I have discovered that all of the Old Testament holidays have a corresponding New Testament event. (Like Passover... Easter) Before, it was on my "to do list" to study those and see. Now I can do more than study. I can live it!

#4 I'm excited to have new traditions and culture to share with my children. I honestly think it is what is missing with modern Christianity. I once heard that every third generation of Christian falls away. Like Nehemiah in the Bible, we must take action to secure their identity, belief, and passion.

I have sooooo much to learn.

I've been told that this website is a good place to start.

(God picked a good time though, huh? Passover/Easter!)

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Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Eating ham on Easter

My friends and I are having an interesting discussion about Easter. It was pointed out that it's ironic that we celebrate Jesus' resurrection with a meal that he wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole. lol. It's so true! A lamb is so much more meaningful than a ham.

It reminds me of the subject of celebrating Halloween. There is that debate about whether a Christian should celebrate it or not. The way I see it, there is the meaning that a holiday holds to *society* and then there is the meaning that a holiday once had- it's roots. And thirdly, there is the meaning that the holiday holds for you and your family *right now*. Halloween used to be a Christian holiday. It currently is a pagan/satanic holiday. But in my family it is a day we like to dress up and trick or treat and enjoy each others company. Not celebrating anything. Easter used to be a pagan holiday. It currently is a religious holiday. In my family it's a day we have a special church service and really spend the day ruminating on God's gift to us and eat candy and be with extended family.

A friend of mine summed it up well:
"if the meaning of a tradition gets lost, the potency of the tradition is lost as well. That goes for the holy AND the pagan. i honestly don't *care* of the origin of a tradition, if the purpose of the origin is no longer being served."

This Easter discussion also led to a discussion on whether we are called to follow the Torah (Old Testament). I'm inclined to believe we are. (But boy do I have a long way to go on that one!) One big myth that American Christians buy into is that Peter's dream was God telling us that the unclean foods are not clean. But go back and reread the story! It doesn't say that!!!! That was merely a metaphor. A metaphor that was interpreted for us! No where else in the Bible do we interpret dreams literally and against God's interpretation!! That's some pretty big food for thought!

I've been inspired to try to follow the Torah laws more closely, with the new perspective that it is God's perfect plan, and even though Jesus was the perfect sacrifice, that doesn't take away all the guidelines for living a Holy life.

In the words of another friend: "My biggest problem with the church's teachings on sin and Torah is this: We seem to have been given this idea that as long as we don't go too far out of bounds we're okay. The purpose that I see in Torah is that we're to be studying and pressing in as close as we can get. I don't want to live on the edge, just being holy enough."

Amen, Sister!

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