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Posts tagged ‘God’

The One you Feed

Alert- this  post features Christian thought.

So our Sunday school lesson this morning is on Psalm 119:9-16. I was struck by these verses, “9  How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word.
10 With my whole heart I have sought You; Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!
11 Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You!”

I was thinking how hard it is for me to memorize bible verses, and what it means to hide God’s word in your heart. It made me think about the story of the Two Wolves, an old Indian legend about the war in the human heart being a war between two wolves, one good and one bad, and the one that wins is the one you feed. Reading God’s word is feeding the good wolf.

I don’t know how many of you know about neural plasticity, the idea that our brain actually reshapes as we learn, a blessing since we don’t grow new neurons, and damage does occur. When we learn things, our brain makes new physical connections between the neurons. When someone has a stroke, other parts of their brain can “rewire” to take over for the damaged parts, making connections to cover those lost areas. We can see this happening for physical tasks, like walking, talking and feeding yourself. This also true of the more nebulous things like feelings, personality and remembering phone numbers.

This time of year is difficult for me, I get sad and maudlin. All the negatives in my life, from childhood to mistakes in raising my own children rear up and assault me in the emotionally charged atmosphere of holidays. Last night I did not allow those thoughts to take over, instead, I found the things that gave me pleasure, and focused on those. I have not had an alcoholic beverage in over 20 years, and I was musing on how quickly a bad mood  of such magnitude could arise as to cause fleeting thoughts of it to pass through. Through long experience I knew other choices to make, and made those instead, reinforcing the positive pathways in my brain.

Feelings come and go, we can stoke the good ones, and tamp down the negative ones. Our decision making ability is the one thing under our control. We can’t control emotions springing up, but, like water, we can channel those emotions so they can become positive things. We can choose what thoughts we allow, and where our thoughts will go. Thoughts are what trigger emotions. If you don’t believe me, just think about whether you turned the stove off, or if a bill is overdue!  If we spend time in God’s word, or around positive people, or reframe our experiences for the positive, we can remake our thoughts. Reframing means changing the context of a thought. For example, I can think “my friend didn’t call me because she is angry with me”, causing a cascade of negative feelings, or I can think “my friend didn’t call me, because like me, she is busy and had no reason to call”, causing no feeling. In other words, don’t go borrowing trouble.  If any of you are suffering from depression, I don’t mean to make it sound easy, I have been there, I know you need help getting a foothold on that ability to reframe.

Which brings me to my last thought. Every time I read about a person changing their life, it comes down to making up their mind to do so.  But most of them had tried changing more than once. Most of the people who succeeded had failed previous attempts. I really think it is like Dumbo’s magic feather. For those that don’t know, Dumbo was an elephant whose enormous ears allowed him to fly, but he didn’t believe he could, so his friend gave him a “magic feather” and convinced him it gave him the power of flight. I think most of us just need a magic feather. You have to have faith that you aren’t in this alone, that you can do what it is you are attempting, and that it will work. Without that faith, attempts fail. I had tried to quit smoking numerous times before I succeeded. Someone said to me “don’t smoke, even if your butt falls off”, and that thought carried me through. It reframed the situation for me. Instead of thinking “can I get through stressful situations without a cigarette?”, it became “nothing is more important than quitting.”

Of course, as a Christian, I believe God is the ultimate object to have faith in. If anyone is familiar with 12 step therapy, you know that they frame it as a higher power, which can be anything outside yourself. Sometimes you need a “subcategory” of something to have faith in, like the fact that others have done what you are doing, or that the process is worth it.

I wrote all of this to pass on what it has taken me years to learn, and what benefits me on a daily basis, as someone who has suffered from anxiety and depression, who did go down the road of addiction and come back. I hope my explanation is clear, and that you might get some benefit from it.

Some Thoughts on Religion

There. I put it right in the title, so if it isn’t your cup of tea, skip it and we’ll get back to fitness and nutrition shortly. I’ve just heard some things lately that bug me and want to air them here, because I do think some of the world is rational.

First, the kidnapping of the Nigerian girls by Boko Haram. The stated purpose is to sell them as wives, aka sex trafficking. This is “an Islamic extremist terrorist organization”. How often do we hear that? Are the non-extremists terrified into silence? If there is a main stream Islam that isn’t extremist, can they do nothing to turn the direction that their faith has gone in? How can any group claim any right to access their higher being in the name of violence and degradation? I don’t know about all religions, but the ones I do know about espouse the same things- seeking for the higher side of our natures, sharing over selfishness, giving rather than taking, cherishing God’s creation. Whatever your definition of God is, I can’t see how it could be a being that glories in harming others. If so, than that being must always be happy, we are so inventive at destroying each other.

Second, banning prayer in public places. I was listening to Albert Mohler talk about the court case in Greece, NY. They made a sincere effort to get many faiths involved, but they didn’t want to end the practice of praying before council meetings. The point was made that such practices have gone on since our founding father’s day, and congress still opens in prayer. I think banning any kind of speech is dangerous. Any time you say there is only one kind of acceptable speech, you are getting into serious government intrusion. I happen to be reading “The Book Thief”, reminding me what  attempts to control others leads to. I also think it is ridiculous to think that prayer, and invoking God, is somehow dangerous. For those who think a secular world is safer and more rational, need I remind you about Hitler, Stalin, Mao and Pol Pot? They were no friends to religion, and their efforts for a better, secular, rational world led to more blood shed than all the religious wars put together. Rhetoric is far more dangerous than prayer. Well, I guess that depends on if you think anyone on the other end is listening….

In any case, if my praying out loud, in public, makes you so nervous you can’t bear it, then can I ban all music that has misogynous references, glorifies shooting, and uses the f- bomb? While we’re at it, add Two and a Half Men and Two Broke Girls. If I can’t have my prayer, you can’t have your sexually explicit conversations.

There, I’m done. We now return you to your regularly scheduled programing.

The Mind Body Connection

In the world of physical fitness, the mind body connection most often refers to yoga, as if that is one of the few things that bring about a connection between the two. However, there  is no actual disconnect. Your body does nothing without the control of your mind, and you are a result of the million decisions you make each day: what to eat, wear, how much to sleep and every habit you have. What people  are really talking about in the mind body connection is making that connection more conscious and purposeful. Add the dimension of the spirit, and the conversation gets even more murky- where does that fit in? For actual yogis, yoga is a religious practice, not an exercise option.

As someone who has come rather late in life to a cordial relationship with her body, and that through karate, another practice which explores the relationship between mind, body and spirit, I often think about these relationships. As a Christian, I also try and see what the relationship between my heritage and beliefs are, and those of the eastern religions. I’ve written before of how I don’t see a difference between physical discipline and spiritual. Self control is one of the gifts of the spirit, and it leads to others. How can you have peace or joy if you are in the grip of an eating disorder, your finances are out of control, or any other addiction is running your life?

Ga 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
23 meekness, self-control; against such there is no law.

The main thought I’m striving for in this post is illustrated in 1 John:

1Jo 4:20 If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, cannot love God whom he hath not seen.

The physical is a mirror to the spiritual. I don’t know if there is a spiritual thing you can do that is not also physical, because everything we do is expressed by our physical bodies. even our thoughts come of a chemical and electrical brain. (Don’t bring up hormones    –   just don’t go there.)

Right now, since I am practicing fasting for the first time and it certainly is a discipline, that is the focus of my ruminations (pun intended). It is denying the physical in favor of the spiritual. Adding to my contemplation is the fact that my mother was anorectic, and I flirted dangerously close to it as a teenager. Eating clearly shows this mirror to the spiritual. Balance has to be maintained for optimal health, that either extreme falls out of spiritual/mental/physical health. To be clear, I am being pragmatic about this. I am fasting certain meals and reducing my food intake over all, rather than doing a 100% fast. I do believe in the spiritual benefit, but not at the destruction of the body. I am already at the lower end of body weight, and am very active. If God wants me to sacrifice my body, it will have to be for a far greater cause than an exercise in discipline!

In any case, eating occupies a unique place in our life, It is one of the basic human needs we can temporarily abstain from, but one of the few pleasures that can slide into abuse that we cannot refrain from. Our alimentary canal cannot be ignored, it derails the most spiritually minded, bringing them back to earth. We may think we’re too cool for school, till we burp or fart, or just the funny noises our stomach makes in the quietest times. God obviously cares about our food, as I’ve posted about before, there are 163 verses mentioning feast, and 140 with the word food in. Fasting is about penitence, mourning, seeking, a reaching out to God. Feasting is about celebrating and enjoying communion with Him. God would like us to do both, in season. Now that we know how important our digestive tract is to our overall health, it makes even more sense why God is so concerned with our eating. One of the first things he tells Adam and Eve is what to eat.

The symbolic and cultural importance of food cannot be ignored either.  Watch a gathering of people with and without food. With food, people linger longer, relax quicker, act more sociable. Without it, they quickly get their business done and disperse.  Food encourages socialization. To willingly abstain from food puts a person at odds with the society at large. To have a unique diet does the same, but nowadays, that seems to be a popular trend. In the face of the overabundance we have now, people are selectively shrinking their choices, in order to regain control of their eating.

Sorry, this post rambled a bit. It’s hard to quantify some thoughts. Thanks for bearing with me.

Does God Care What we Eat?

Alert! For those for whom Christian conversation is offensive, quit reading or be prepared to be offended

From time to time, when I talk about nutrition, I get a backlash of “But who would want to  eat that stuff” or “But I hate vegetables.” I think this is sad. As I am a Christian, I believe food is from God, and how we eat directly is correlated to how God would like us to live. My purpose of this post is to demonstrate that, and to possibly persuade the anti-health food crowd to reconsider.

To begin, God has told us what to eat in His word:

pretty veggiesGe 1:29 ¶ And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.

We were not given meat to eat until after the flood:

Ge 9:1 ¶ And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth.

2 The fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every bird of the air, upon everything that creeps on the ground and all the fish of the sea; into your hand they are delivered.

3 Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you; and as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything.

4 Only you shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood.

frighttened lynx

The fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth.

I would take this to mean that vegetables, nuts, seeds and grains were our original food, later, we added meat. Thus, I would say that the modern injunction to eat mostly plants, but not necessarily to be vegetarian, would be in line with God’s word.

Daniel reemphasizes this with his reluctance to eat the rich food of the king’s court:

Da 1:5 And the king appointed them a daily provision of the king’s meat, and of the wine which he drank: so nourishing them three years, that at the end thereof they might stand before the king.

6 Now among these were of the children of Judah, Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah:

7 Unto whom the prince of the eunuchs gave names: for he gave unto Daniel the name of Belteshazzar; and to Hananiah, of Shadrach; and to Mishael, of Meshach; and to Azariah, of Abednego.

8 ¶ But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.

Da 1:12 Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink.

13 Then let our countenances be looked upon before thee, and the countenance of the children that eat of the portion of the king’s meat: and as thou seest, deal with thy servants.

14 So he consented to them in this matter, and proved them ten days.

15 And at the end of ten days their countenances appeared fairer and fatter in flesh than all the children which did eat the portion of the king’s meat.

16 Thus Melzar took away the portion of their meat, and the wine that they should drink; and gave them pulse.

Mmm-mmm-love that “pulse”. (Actually translated as grain.)

What have we done with this?

We have taken the food God created, and replaced it with ersatz food, fake food. Some packages you read have no real food items in them. God gave us the intelligence to do this. He also gave us the intelligence to realize that this is harmful. If we know something is harmful and we do it anyway, what are we saying to the One who created us.

Ro 1:25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

Ro 1:23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.

1Co 6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

1Co 6:20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

What is the purpose of the food you eat?

Yes, there is a social aspect, and food is tied to culture and emotion. But foods primary purpose is to nourish our bodies, to give us strength and health. If your food isn’t doing that, try doing it God’s way. All the most popular diets that work come back to the same principles- eat real, whole food. Eat lots of vegetables, some fruit and grain, less of milk and meat. If you truly hate vegetables, try some of the smoothie recipes out there. Grind them up and add them to your meatloaf, add more to your soups, or casseroles. Choose foods based on their health benefits

If you are at the doctor’s office, and he is saying: 1. You need to lose weight. 2. Your blood pressure is too high. 3. You have type II diabetes. 4. You have metabolic syndrome. 5. You suffer from constipation or other bowel issues, maybe it’s time to reevaluate what you are eating and why. Look at all the plants God put on this earth, and try to fit more of them into your diet, without smothering them in oil, or deep fat frying them. Do you have trouble with heart burn? How many food related medicines are you taking?

Php 3:19 Whose end is destruction, whose god is the stomach, and whose glory is in their shame, whose minds are fixed on the things of the earth.

If taste is the overriding factor in your choices, ignoring the health effects of those choices, maybe it’s time to ask “Is this really how God wants me to live?”

BTW, the answer to the question “Does God care what we eat?” is yes and no. Yes, he wants us to treat our bodies with respect, and eat the food he gave us. No:

Mt 6:25 ¶ Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?
Lu 12:22 ¶ And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on.

From “You Can” to “You Have to”

I know I just posted recently on the new easy, convenient prenatal genetic test that is just around the corner, but I can’t get it off my mind. The reason is what history is showing us. We have enjoyed many medical miracles in the last 50 years. The social impact of those medical changes has, in my opinion, gone unnoticed. The number one is the overwhelming trend from “we can” to “we have to”, to the point where it is considered immoral or criminal not to.

What am I talking about? Every medical advance, unless it is prohibitively expensive, and sometimes even then, becomes mandatory. Vaccinations are a perfect example. Now, don’t get me wrong, in general I am in favor of vaccinations. I’m very glad I never had whooping cough, measles, mumps, etc. However, vaccines are now mandatory. You could be charged for neglect if you don’t get your child vaccinated. Sounds good, right? Until we come up against the issue of inoculating children against venereal disease. The argument is out there that it should be criminal to not vaccinate children against HPV. This is a huge moral issue for many people, but for the pragmatists-because we can, we have to.

All right, I can see you still don’t see a problem with this. How about animals? You can now be charged with neglect for not getting proper veterinary care for them. What is proper care? 17$ monthly flea treatments? $35 dollar monthly heart worm prevention? How about 4-5 “essential” vaccines that might run you over $100 dollars. People are abandoning their animals rather than face those kinds of costs, or having them seized by the SPCA. Now shelters have to pick that cost up, and consider the outcry against killing animals, we have shelters being charged with neglect because they can’t afford to feed and care for all these animals to that standard. Because we can, we have to.

We can keep people alive under circumstances that were never possible before, with machines and medicine, yet we are complaining that health care is driving us to financial ruin. Most of these people being kept alive by extraordinary means are being done so by Medicaid or Medicare, as no one else can afford it. Because we can, we have to.

This same logic is driving abortion. If you can find out ahead of time that someone is going to need extraordinary care, abort them and avoid the issue. If you don’t think that is going on right this minute, look at the statistics on Down’s syndrome. Why has there been a 95% drop in the incidence of children born with Downs? Is it because we can cure it? Sure, by making sure they aren’t born. If you don’t think pressure is put on these mothers to “do something” if the test is positive, you have your head in the sand. Once we know something, we are responsible for it. Once we know more about the genetic status of an infant, it will become immoral to bring that child into the world. Because we can, we have to.

I can’t say I have a great answer. Our knowledge has brought us terrible burdens. When we talk about “Obama’s death panels”, we are dancing around a reality that none of us wants to delve into. We have the technical capabilities to do almost anything, if not now, shortly in the future. But that ability comes at a price that has to be paid somehow. Either the market dictates what is or isn’t done, or we come up with other ways to ration or rationalize it. Right now, to most people, abortion looks like the easy fix. Get rid of the expensive problems in advance, rather than deal with the thorny issue of limited resources. But why is killing people at one end of life all right, but letting them die at the other wrong?

This moral dilemma weighs on me a lot. “Because we can, we have to” drives much of the health care debate, but anyone can see there is no way to satisfy that. What is happening to our animals is happening to us. We can’t afford it, the governments can’t afford it, but morally, how do you say no? And is killing our children the answer? When life and death were in God’s hands, it was sad and hard to deal with, but we were off the hook, morally. We took all these things into our hands, putting us in the moral hot seat. It makes me glad I’m not God, because I don’t see any good answers, at least in the short term. I usually like to write articles where there is an answer in the end. I like to ask questions I have an answer for. This one, I have no answer for, but I think we are coming up with “solutions” without even looking at the implications of what we are doing, especially morally. We are killing the babies since that seems like the easiest answer. You don’t have to look at them- you can pretend it isn’t real. You don’t have to look someone in the eyes and pull the plug. We’ve rationalized it into not even being killing.

Fitness Redefined

I reposted another person’s quote, “The relationship with your body is the most important one in you life, you can’t divorce your body.” on facebook, and a friend of mine corrected me and said, “Your relationship with Jesus is the most important one in your life.” He’s right, but that made me think about what the relationship between fitness and faith is, and why I think fitness is important for faith.

The way I look at it is that:

1Co 6:19 Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own;
20 you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

Some people refer to their bodies as a “meat suit”. The gnostics, the earliest heretics that Paul railed against, saw all material objects as evil, leading them to either engage in hedonism (what you do with your body doesn’t matter to your spirit) or Asceticism ( the flesh needs to be denied or despised.) The way I see it is, God created your body, he made it just for you. How you treat it is how you treat a gift from God.

Much of what we do for enjoyment is not good for our bodies. The results are physically evident. Some of those things are considered sins by many religious people. Drinking to excess, promiscuous sex, drug use are all recognized as being detrimental to our physical health, and our spirits as well. The Catholic church lumped gluttony in there as well, and that is one that many  Protestant Christian churches dodge around. I would say, is there a difference between drinking to excess and eating to excess? I would go further and say that there is nothing wrong with drinking in moderation, just as eating in moderation is good. While promiscuous sex is prohibited by the bible,  sex within marriage is good. Do we see a pattern? Careful, disciplined love for our bodies is a way we can show our appreciation for what God has given us. We cannot show our love for God directly, other than prayer. We can’t send Him a card, bake him a cake, or buy Him lunch. We can care for each other (number 1), our bodies(number 2), and the planet he gave us (number 3). Or maybe tie 2 and 3 together, ’cause how can you care for your body if you’ve trashed your house (the earth)?

It is easy to make physical analogies to spiritual principles. It is also easy to get carried away with those analogies, or to take it literally. You can be very focused and disciplined in how you live your life, yet be completely spiritually bankrupt. You can take me to task for this post, and tell me I’m all wrong, but I would need convincing. Most of the time, when there is something wrong spiritually, it is reflected in some form of physical dysfunction- addiction or avoidance in some form. Most of the time, where there is spiritual balance, there is physical balance to one degree or another. Let me know what you think. If you think I’m wrong, please take the time to make a cogent argument, I’m listening.

Some thoughts on God.

I really don’t understand God. Now, this might be a Captain Obvious moment, but it is on my mind right now. Our church is reading through the bible, out loud, in marathon fashion. I signed up for Monday morning, and when I got there, the previous person was finishing up with Joshua, so I ended that and started Judges. A lot of bad stuff goes on in Judges. While there is a whole lot of “and the people did evil in the sight of the LORD”, there are also a lot of things God said and did that don’t fit my ideas of who He is. You can’t read it any other way than he ordered people killed, and even arranged things to teach the Israelites about war.

Jg 3:1 Now these are the nations which Jehovah left, to prove Israel by them, even as many of Israel as had not known all the wars of Canaan;
2 only that the generations of the children of Israel might know, to teach them war, at the least such as beforetime knew nothing thereof:

We see God as dealing with us as individuals. That is how He is portrayed in many circumstances. In the old Testament, His relationship with humans is focused on nation building, so that the things that benefit that end get His blessing, even if men are killed for it. When you take into account that His view of things is eternal, so that even if we suffer and die, that is but a moment prior to eternal life, it does put things in a different perspective. However, we don’t have that perspective. No one has come back from the other side to say, “Here’s how things look from the other side.”

Now, I have heard people say “I can’t believe in a God who would let x happen.” Which I think is a very confused statement. Similar to, ” I can’t accept weather that has tornadoes in it.” Does your accepting or believing change what is? If I don’t believe that tornado is coming, will that make it not happen? Far better to say,” I can’t understand a God who lets “x” happen.”

Some people think that God changed between the old and new testament, or that the God of the old and new are not the same one. Outside of the fact that most mainstream Christian denominations don’t believe that, it doesn’t make sense. If you read the new, Christ is clearly talking about the God who created all, and that is the God of Genesis.

Some people just shrug and say, “we live in a Genesis three world.” Which is true. The third chapter of Genesis is when the fall happens, and once that occurred, everything changed. That statement seems to gloss over the mind numbing depth of evil that occurs here on a daily basis. Reading the old Testament shows you God is no stranger to what is going on here. He is also strangely silent when it comes to commenting on it. Read chapter 19 of Judges. Did the woman pray as she lay on the doorstep dying? Did she curse her husband, safe on the other side? I’m sure there are those who would say she deserved it, since she was a concubine and “played the harlot”. I think that is a pathetic argument in light of her fate. And how about all the men who raped her? If you read on, they die too, but when I think of an omnipotent God, none of this needed to happen. I know, I know, “free will”. Is it any wonder that he just wiped most of the people out in the flood? And before you start the argument, “he created us, so how can he get mad at us”, look at us as parents. We create our kids, and we still expect them to behave, because we know they are capable of doing so. We are capable of being good, extraordinarily so, yet we hurt each other in ways big and small, on a daily basis.
It is obvious that Christ’s coming changed the world. If it were not for him, we might still be doing things like what goes on in that chapter of Judges. By that I mean thinking it is ok to sacrifice your wife to save yourself.  I truly believe it is his influence that changed the world. I just heard on the news last night that Turkey has taken a strongly Islamic turn, and the murder rate of women has risen 1400%. Obviously, through Christ, God has changed the hearts of men. And it is Christ. Our world did not become the place where caring for others, protecting the vulnerable and defending women and children was common until Christ’s influence was felt. Even if you didn’t believe, once His principles became the norm, you risked public censure and criminal proceedings if you violated His standards. This doesn’t mean that there is no violent crime in Christian nations. Far from it. However, there is the common social pact that agrees that such things are wrong and need to be punished. The change that Christ wrought in the world is not a black and white one, but rather a matter of degree.

If you feel this blog article is rambling and disjointed, well, I guess that means I did a good job of outlining my thoughts on God. Like I said, I don’t understand Him.  There are many times when I wish he created us without the violent streak. It wouldn’t have stopped us from having free will. And maybe he didn’t put it there, but if you want to argue the devil, well, God allowed him his sway over us, so in essence it all comes back around to God.

Before you say “see, we need to eliminate all religious belief, that’s the source of all the killing and hate”, we tried that with fascism, communism, totalitarianism, etc. You can see how peaceful those non-religious belief systems were. (That’s sarcasm for those who don’t know their history, look up Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, Pol Pot, Khmer Rouge, etc, etc.) “We have met the enemy, and it is us.” It really doesn’t seem to matter what the prevailing belief system is, we, as  a group, are violent and nasty.

Do I have a point to this? No. I was hoping that as I wrote, my thoughts would become more coherent, that things would make more sense. In the end, it is up to each of us to keep our noses clean, and to follow after God as individuals. That is expected of us, that much is clear in the Bible. The rest, well, maybe it will make sense someday.

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