Tuesday, May 29, 2007

God's Sheep DO hear His voice

God is soo good

My friends, what a great God we serve.

This past week I was seriously foodless. End of the month. Tons of bills to pay and food being a luxury and all that. I didn't say anything however about my need to anyone. (I hope no one thinks these money issues come from laziness on my or my husband's part. We had a series of bad health stuff which create mega hospital bills. Then older son went through a "phase" which gave us a lot of lawyer and legal bills. It also made him unhirable for a while because although what he did was a misdemeanor, walmart and home depot and those other places didn't hire him. In addition, I used to teach until fibromyalgia made that impossible. And having to take care of Gabe in my pained sleepless state was very hard. Hard to get a job where you have to leave every year for two months to take care of your child. So...if anyone is judging...that's my reason for being foodless this month.)

Anyway...what happens?
Our of the blue:

1) A neighbor from down the road whom I haven't seen in a while suddenly brought me two bags of food.
2)A friend who owns a pizza store gave me a box of whole wheat linguine
3) My guatemalan church friend --whom I decided to visit on a whim-- gave me two bags of food (meat, veggies, fruits) and made me a lunch.

Now my son has some fruits and veggies to eat. No more rice and rice and rice. I'm saving the soup for him.

God's people do hear his voice. Sometimes when everyone in church is dancing around in the spirit -- I'll admit it-- the cynical part of me goes: "Oh come on! That's not the holy spirit; they're just fooling themselves." Yep, call me a cynic but I've had way too many people who suposedly have the holy spirit treat me horribly. I don't think someone is a Christian just because she says so. Nah, I'm not stupid.

Sometimes I get into a kind of depressed mode thinking God has forgotten me or that His people aren't listening to Him to help me pray for Gabe. But this really showed me that God is as always an everpresent help in trouble. And yes, this has convinced me that God is indeed alive and active and working in my church. I like that. Now maybe I'll listen to the minister's sermons more.
-C

Monday, May 28, 2007

Fear and panic

My editor, Paula Guran, of Juno Books always posts reviews to Juno's blog. Aargh!


http://juno-books.com/blog/


She posts the good and the bad. I like that. Some publishing houses wouldn't post the bad. Major respect on that.

Well, now I feel a panic coming on. Okay, I'll admit it. I felt the panic about a couple of months ago. I even wrote Paula an email telling her that she should warn me when Wind Follower reviews are bad so I can be spared a great deal of grief.

I have a friend who is an actress who says things like, "why do people with rejection issues choose professions such as writing and acting where they are being judged by people?"

My husband -- he's such a sweetie!!! -- looked at me and said, "I don't think you're the type who should look at your reviews." Hey, the man knows me. I'm way too sensitive.

So then there I was screaming in panic-stricken mode: "What's wrong with me? Why did I write a book that will be published and placed on American bookshelves? What was I thinking about? People are going to be judging me and saying mean things about me. AAAARGH!" Something like that. I kinda got into such a state I didn't know what I was yelling.

My husband said, "Your problem is that you like everyone. And you simply can't handle it when no one likes you because that's so rare." Yes, alas that is true.

That's one of my most horrible personality traits. I am just fascinated by people. I'm not used to disliking people, and I'm not used to them disliking me. And now, what have I done?

My friend Jim used to say that my tendency to gush over him and his work just irked him. Seems he wanted to choke me because I just gushed over everything and everyone. I can't help it. He's a good writer. Is gushing such a bad trait?

We went to an art opening and although I hated the piece of art I gushed!
Jim looked at me and said, "You liked that cr*p?":

I said, "she's an artist, she put her soul on that painted silk scarf. Who am I NOT to gush? She tried hard. It's not that bad. Actually I kinda like it."

He gave me one of those looks as if he wanted to kill me. So yeah, I gush with everyone and over everything. I tend to delight in things. Delight in my middle name. BUT BUT BUT BUT Bad writing gets no mercy from me. Weird, uh? I just don't gush. Immature writing by beginners I'm kinda patient with.

And now I'm going to be out there on the nation's bookshelves....getting judged! AAAARGH!!!! Some reviews will love Wind Follower, of course. But then there are others. The "others." Reviewers who will be treating me the way I treat new writers in my critique group who write crappily!

Okay, okay, I have got to chill. This is what putting one's creativity out there in the world is all about.

Another scary thought: what's worse than no one liking your work? No one looking at it? No one thinking it is even worth looking at?

Okay, I've reviewed stuff on www.compulsivereader.com and on www.curledup.com and on www.rambles.net and on countless sites. And now it's my turn.

I've gushed over a lotta authors, and I've given several of them a break (because they were new authors and since their work had gotten into print I didn't want to pick on them and say they published a bad book.) And I've slammed many people.

Payback time. AAARGH!!!!!
-
C

Friday, May 25, 2007

Angels

There are verses in the Bible about how the angels rejoiced at God's work of creation, and how the angels rejoice when a sinner repents and how the angels rejoiced to see Jesus's day and how the angels comforted Jesus in the garden. I thought of Isaiah chapter 6 where the angels forever praise God singing "Holy, holy, holy!" Someone once said that with each revolution around God the angels see something new and wonderful about God and that for all the ages they've been discovering God they are still startled with the wonder that is God.

I don't know what it was but last night I was overwhelmed with the feeling of the angels' love for humanity. It seemed so strange. There really was no theological benefit to think of their love.

I imagined them praising Him when he made the stars and all the sciences. But how delighted they were when God made man. How amazed they were when God showed them how our bodies worked, how our souls worked, how He had joined Himself to us in such a unique way. (Yes, i know...a few were jealous and rebelled but I'm talking about the angels who are sealed to goodness, those who can no longer sin or rebel against God.)

The angels saw how our bodies would work physically, sexually, intellectually, biologically, chemically. They saw how our souls would sing, design, command, and be like God.

When Jesus was in the garden of Gethsemane, I saw how the angels came and held him tight and wiped his tears.

Luke (hubby) and I just talked and talked all night about that. I keep remembering the angel I saw and how sweet and witty and personable he was. That sweet conspiratorial smile that made me realize that angels have personalities too and that this odd being was my friend..and that he loved me sooo sooo soo very much. It just made my heart leap.

The upshot of all that was that I got up and decided that whether or not Gabe's diagnosis is autistic, he would learn about God. So I began reading the Bible to him. The word of God is alive and can heal him if he understands. When I told him about the rocks and the sun and all the speechless things praising God he smiled with such joy and when I told him about the sick little girl who was on her bed and couldn't move but Jesus told her to get up and she got up he seemed to understand.

I know Jesus gave us a great salvation, and there is no way I'm going to give up.

Carole McDonnell
Wind Follower June 2007 Juno Books

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Jeanne Guyon

This morning while cleaning my bedroom I came upon a neat quote from Jeanne Guyon's book. It was mentioned in a book called Christian Maturity by Henry Riffle (I think that's the name. I didn't look at the author)

I opened the book to that page and it gave me such joy. She lived in France around 1600-1700 --something like that. I have her book --which was burned as heretical back in the day by the French Catholic church. Anyway, she was talking about commanding the word of healing. It made my heart sing. I like finding stuff like that in old books. Like Pastor Romaine from 1500. When you read stuff in books that are 400 or 500 years old and the christian writers from back in the day are writing the same things that folks like Andrew Wommack and Creflo Dollar and Reinhard Bonnke and Emily Dotson are saying...well it gives a bit of peace. It makes you trust that the present interpretation isn't an American spin/heresy but a truth that is being rediscovered.

Praise God. I feel he led me to it.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Christians worldwide

GLOBAL DAY OF PRAYER GATHERING IN VANCOUVER/PORTLAND

Third annual Global Day of Prayer.

It began on May 17 and culminates on Sunday, May 27. Christians from 220 nations across the world will be in prayer for missions to the nations. For more details check the website www.globaldayofprayer.com. Find out if there is a gathering in your city or area.



7th WORLD CHRISTIAN GATHERING OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

The 7th World Christian Gathering of Indigenous People (WCGIP) convenes in Israel in September 9-18, 2008. Delegates from hundreds of tribes from all over the world are expected and many of these tribes and languages will be represented in Jerusalem for the first time in history. E-mail: gavriel@shlichut.com www.wcgip.org

Christian volunteer projects for ethnic Christian writers

Am passing this along for a friend. I'll be doing the story of the gospel site. These Christian Projects are (Unpaid) Volunteer Work. There are other needs too up at the site. http://www.modernscribe.com/projects.html Those needs look pretty specialized but there is payment for them. -C

The following domain names are designated for non-profit use (no ads or outbound links). When you help develop one of these sites, you help others. How often do you have an opportunity to give a speech in front of 1,000 people who want advice? Develop one of these, and your words should reach thousands of people!


Contact Bill to get started at: http://www.modernscribe.com/contact.html

Moshiach.co.il - Jews who do not believe that Yeshua (Jesus) is the Messiah are still waiting for the Messiah to come. Moshiach is one of the common spellings of the word Messiah in Hebrew. The .co.il extension is the Israeli equivalent of .com. This name receives a little bit of type-in traffic and it is currently forwarded to a Messianic site. I would like someone to write at least one page of content in Hebrew about Yeshua, the Messiah, for non-Messianic Jews.
Yeshua.org.il - Messianic Jews who believe that Jesus is the Messiah refer to him by the Hebrew name of Yeshua. The .org.il extension is the Israeli equivalent of .org. This name receives a little bit of type-in traffic and it is currently forwarded to a Messianic site. I would like someone to write at least one page of content in Hebrew about Yeshua for Messianic Jews.
Giexu.vn - Giexu is the word for Jesus in Vietnamese and .vn is Vietnam's country specific domain name extension. I would like someone to write at least one page of content in Vietnamese about Jesus.
Yesu.org.cn - Yesu is the pinyin word for Jesus in Chinese. The .org.cn extension is the Chinese equivalent of .org. I would like someone to write at least one page of content in simplified Mandarin about Jesus.
Yesu.tv - Yesu is the pinyin word for Jesus in Chinese. I would like someone to find a short video clip about Jesus in Mandarin and then obtain permission from the owners for their clip to be made available for download on yesu.tv. I envision a one page site which has a Flash video player in the center of the page. When a visitor clicks the play button, the video begins to play.
StoryOfTheGospel.com - I would like someone to write at least one page of content about the story of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This should be written in simple enough English for a child to understand.
WhyDoBadThingsHappen.com - On a daily basis, people search online for the phrase, "why do bad things happen". I would like someone to write at least one page of content about the biblical perspective on why bad things happen. This site should keep a positive tone and serve to comfort its readers.
NagHammadi.com - The Nag Hammadi Library was discovered in 1945 and it contained some Gnostic books which have been translated into English. I would like someone to write a few pages of information about the Nag Hammadi find as well as about the Gnostic Gospels. This site should offer a conservative overview which does not cause Christians to lose their faith or stumble into practicing gnosticism.

http://www.modernscribe.com/projects.html

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Flavor of Love Girls: Charm School – Redemption, the true self, and learning How to Play The Con

I am absolutely convinced that many reality-show contestants live in a post-traumatic state of regret. How can they not? After the celebrity has waned, after the show in which they embarrassed themselves has aired, after they find they can no longer look at their parents without shame, some of these folks –the ones with a sense of propriety—probably wish they could turn back time and return to the days before they made fools of themselves on worldwide television.

This is probably most true of contestants who have gone wild in dating reality shows. I have never had the opportunity to have a camera follow me around. (I don’t drink but honestly if I was the kind of person to get drunk and sex-crazed and cast all common sense away I wouldn’t have a camera following me around.) But alas the world is full of women who have publicly done stupid things and who now regret their stupidity. (Okay, men do stupid things too, but the world doesn’t judge them as harshly as it judges women.)

Anyway, up comes the new VH1 show Flavor of Love Girls: Charm School. a spin-off from VH1’s Flavor-Flav family of shows. I’ve got to say that the first episode won me over when Mo’Nique, the host of the show and the actress who created the series, removed the foul nicknames the girls had received from Flavor Flav. Flavor Flav had given them these nicknames to comment on some nasty aspect of their behavior or some body parts. (Boots, Hottie, Crazy etc) When Mo’Nique tossed those nicknames into the cleansing fire, the director added some gospel-tones in the background and – what with all those tears-- I could have sworn I was watching a baptism or purification ceremony. Yeah, I’ll admit it. I almost cried. It was like seeing the local town prostitute come into church and give up her life of sin. Yep, tears welled up in my eyes.

I like working class reality shows. Whether it’s some show about crab fishermen, folks doing dirty jobs, or home-makeover shows that help the poor, I like seeing my own people –working class people, poor people, black people, poor white people—in the media. Frankly, most past television reality shows and sitcoms dealt with too many middle-class women with Barbie Doll physiques and perfect etiquette. There was the occasional sitcom or talk show that dealt with working class Americans but they were few and far between. As Becky “Buckwild” Johnston, one of the girls on Charm School, said of The Bachelor , “I never liked them white people reality shows.” As far as I was concerned, truer words were never spoken.

Television, unfortunately, is notoriously unreal. Many Americans are not like the folks in The Bachelor. White, black, Asian, or Hispanic, they are working class people. And mainstream television –unlike the VH1 channel—seems unaware that we working class folks want to see portrayals of ourselves. I don’t mind listening to shows about rich doctors mind you, but give me stories, songs, shows that show folks using my own language who have money problems as I do. One can look at the “other” for just so long. By “other” I mean, “rich people living in rich houses or sophisticated people being all sophisticated.”

But the “other” also needs to look at the working class. Case in point: When a charm school teacher from “The Swan School” for etiquette gave the girls a walking lesson, she complained that the girls were moving their bottoms too much. What reality is this woman in? Obviously the white reality. Honestly, we black women have big curvaceous butts. As the guys say when I walk downtown? “Got milk with that shake?” Yes, even when we aren’t trying to shake our butts, we are going to sway sensually. “Baby got back!” But the etiquette teacher was so caught up in her racial world that she complained their butts were too big and were too pushed out. I wanted to say, “Lady, you have to broaden your mind a bit and become more racially aware. Or are you saying black women’s butts make them unsuitable to the standards of white etiquette?”

Of course, not all the white folks on this show are bound by their classist and racist ideas. Andrew Firestone was a doll. Unlike Flavor Flav in The Flavor of Love , Andrew was the sophisticated rich prince of a guy, and all the rich girls were all vying for him. Like Buckwild, I never watched The Bachelor. but my, my, what a handsome boy he is! Sweet, gentle, not racist at all. Although, I’ve got to say he was pretty na├»ve. How could he fall for the machinations of an obvious loony psychopath like Schatar? Do men fall for external games of etiquette that have nothing to do with the actual character of a person? Is that what being sophisticated – and Andrew comes from money so he knows a lot about sophistication—is about? Being fooled by the airs put on by a loony? Are the world truly built on such standards?

Alas, I’m beginning to fear that at the end of the season, the winner of Charm School’s $50,000 might be someone who hasn’t learned true charm at all. Instead, it will be a conniving gal who has learned that charm is all about manipulation, self-servingness, and general sneakiness. Yep, I’ve been wondering about Charm School’s standards. Every week some questionable folks remain, never getting expelled despite their obvious lack of morals. Although Leilene survived the first elimination, her kindness was a detriment. Leilene is sweet and charming, but from what I’ve been seeing, kindness and caring for the feelings of other people is not a valuable asset in Charm school. In the second episode, Schatar won by guile and cruelty yet escaped elimination. In the fourth episode, Larissa – who hates all “weak” people—was safe from elimination although she has serious anger, immaturity, and spite issues.

I’ll continue hoping for the best, though. God might surprise me. Maybe the hateful Larissa will be looking up at Mo’Nique with repentant maudlin tears in her eyes and singing “To Sir With Love.” One can always hope. But if she does it, I’ll be thinking it’s an act. But perhaps that’s what charm is all about.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

American Idol: Melinda Dolittle -- Putting your words where your beliefs are

When finalist Melinda Dolittle was being mentored by Barry Gibb on American Idol she changed the words to one his songs, “How can you mend a broken heart?”

The line actually states: “How can a loser ever win?”

But Melinda omitted that negative line because, as she explained, she didn’t want to sing about losing.

I liked that.

What exactly is singing? Isn’t it a celebration of what one feels in the deepest part of one’s life? Isn’t the singer also the song?

In this world we have gotten so used to entertainment that doesn’t proceed from the soul …singers singing songs that don’t proclaim their hearts' truths that it simply rejoiced my heart to here that master singer say, “I just don’t want to sing a song about losing.”

She made me think. Note that on the website she gives props to the Bible. Always neat. But many American Idol finalists are religious. The United States is a religious country.

But back to Melinda’s Choice. Let’s face it. Philosophically speaking, the words “How can a loser ever win?” is questionable. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t believe there’s anything wrong with a sad song. Songs should reflect our hearts. I don’t even mind songs about temporary hopelessness. Sometimes we feel temporarily hopeless. But I don’t think I like songs about EXTREME hopelessness. I mean…there’s always hope. I don’t like singers who are Christians singing songs with such an extreme line as “How can a loser ever win?” Hey, teenagers are vulnerable to romanticized despair. Our own minds are vulnerable to what we repeat to ourselves. And that word “ever” is so general. Haven’t we been taught in school never to generalize opinions and emotions about ourselves, other people, or situations.

For Christians, words are very important. They have a power. Indeed, our Lord is called The Word. We are taught by local ministers, by past Christian orators, and by world-famous televangelists like Andrew Wommack to be careful with what we speak and what we hear. But many Christian pop singers –yes, you rap stars who sing about bitches and ho’s, I’m talking to you—seem separated from the words they sing. Why the disconnect?

I remember one St Francis Day at my former Episcopal church. The ceremony was the blessing of the animals – which was always performed on St Francis Day. All around the churchyard were dogs, cats, caged (mercifully) mice, snakes, etc. The pastor has searched far and wide for all kinds of exotic animals also. He wanted a good program. Yours truly was snagged to read the Genesis chapter. A local folk musician played some of the songs.

Do you know what the musician sang? John Lennon’s “Imagine”. Ugh. Yes, he sang it in a churchyard. I know many people love that song but I personally didn’t like someone coming into my church singing a song about “Imagine there’s no heaven” especially since I had friends there whom I was hoping to meet. Hey, I always loved the song except for that line. What irked me was that everyone else either sang along or chose to silently “not sing” the line. Being a bit of a pill, I told the priest I didn’t like it that the guy had challenged one of the tenets of my religion. Hey, the musician might have known he was doing a bit of blasphemy – he had that smug “I’m an agnostic” look on his face. (Yeah, some agnostics can be smug, admit it.) But everyone didn’t see the guy’s war-face as he sang a battle-cry of agnosticism in a church yard. We Christians can be so gullible about judging human actions. Were we so caught up with the tune of the song and the aura of John Lennon that we didn’t challenge the verse? We were trying to play nice and respect a musician who obviously wasn’t playing nice and being respectful to us at all? Christians challenge so many things and yet we let so many other things go.

Melinda has always been a singer who seems to connect to the words of her songs. Although she does not write songs as far as I know, her insistence – inability—to sing a song of despair puts her in the ranks of the great singer-songwriters. Or even the likes of John Meyer, Five For Fighting’s John Ondrasik, and Christian singer-songwriter, Kirk Franklin.

I’ve been a fan of Melinda Dolittle, Jordin Sparks, and Blake Lewis from the beginning. They’re all winners as far as I’m concerned. But I must say now I have a sweet little spot in my heart for Melinda. How can a winner ever lose?

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Bug Movie

Bug Movie



There’s a new bug movie coming out from Lion’s Gate soon. It's called BUG.
I don’t know if I’ve ever told you but I LOVE creature features. Whenever any of the following are on television
• Lake Placid
• Deep Blue Sea
• or Anaconda
I’m there on the couch watching.

And why? Because I love movies about nature out of control, about nature putting man in his place, something big and uncontrollable. Call it some perverse Christian need for an apocalypse. Hey, I'll admit it. I love anarchy and general mayhem. A cleansing of the world's values brought about by some mega-disaster.


Okay, I hear some folks saying, “I can deal with big creatures but bugs? Bugs are icky.”
True. Bugs freak me out too. But here again, I see a perverse Christianity working within me.


BUGS are just plain sneaky, and covert. They have six legs and they are so dang organized. Plus there are way too many of them. But I think I like them because they are also


• demonically-organized
• subtly and covertly invasive.
• Seemingly powerless by themselves but really pretty powerful in large numbers.


So up comes this film.
Honestly, as a Christian horror flicks are one of the few genres I feel safe with. Often they deal with a good philosophical theme.

And from what I can see on the you tube trailer, this one seems to be about some wicked external evil oppressing innocent humans who need a wake-up call:


it looks like poor Ashley Judd is going to be turned into one of their BUG queens. I mean that’s what the trailer seems to imply. Don’t you love it when some famous actress is in a bug flick? Now I find myself wondering: what does someone do when she’s been turned into a queen bug by invading aliens?



Check out the website at Lion’s Gate.
bug movie

Or here:
bug movie



Monday, May 07, 2007

My Child Magazine

Just happened upon this.

Here's a little of what they said on their site:


How we will help you:
Bi-Monthly Magazine

MY CHILD TODAY is New Jersey's first consumer/trade publication to focus on children with special needs.


MY CHILD TODAY explores the significance of caring for children with a full spectrum of special needs. Anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, mental illness, learning disabilities, autism and ADHD are just a few of the afflictions that are addressed in the magazine

NOW THIS IS THE PART I REALLY LIKED:

MAKE A FRIEND Facility

In addition to the magazine, MY CHILD TODAY plans to build a very special facility for children with disabilities. So often, these children are isolated and even ostracized. Our facility will serve as a youth center with our main goal to help these children develop their social skills, self esteem and sense of self. The center will be a safe haven for kids to have fun, make friends and provide some much needed respite for wary parents. It will also be home to the Challenger Cheerleaders.


It is so hurtful to see your child stand alone, watching other children play all-the-while not being included. One friend can make such a difference. Through our Make A Friend Program and facility, we will be in the position to offer parents the opportunity to bring children together to help them make that much needed friend. So many parents take the sight of kids playing in their home for granted, but for parents with special needs children, it is a dream come true. We hope to have your support for this desperately needed program.



Nice, uh?

Check out the site:
www.mychildmagazine.com

Thursday, May 03, 2007

irrational or proven faith

Okay, once again Law and Order has shown religious people as being irrational. I swear you can always tell who the baddie is in these episodes. If it's a religious person who reads his Bible he's got to be the villain. And Law and Order is not the only television show that's guilty of this.

Why do they think Bible readers are irrational?

The Bible is the best book in the world. And folks who judge Bible readers really should consider many things if they want to say the Bible stifles critical thinking.

Movies always behave as if Bible believers are an uneducated bunch. True, many Bible lovers are uneducated. But others are quite educated.

Look at me. I totally believe the Bible is the word of God. Totally. My house has about 2000 Bible study books. Hey, I'm a lit major. I love studying. I learned how to do reading comprehension. I learned how to deal with writers like the Bible prophets who spoke symbolically and who digressed then returned to a point. I learned to link things together. I'm educated. Somewhat.

But many Christians -- black and white-- were taught by sweet little old ladies who had a dream of stopping crime or of preventing girls from becoming pregnant. They did well -- wonderful and noble deeds. In fact, their place in our community as teachers was often all the respect they had. And wanting to read the Bible was one of the reasons they learned to read. Although I don't know why so many of them think they actually fully comprehend Elizabethan English. Many a weird cult has begun because someone didn't understand Shakespearean English.

So yeah, some folks just don't understand reading comprehension, some don't research, some don't aim to improve their knowledge. Human pride, what can I say? Just because they are Christians doesn't mean they are immune to vanity or idiocy. They don't want to realize that they might need to know more. Does that mean uneducated people can't think? Or that the Bible has stopped their brains? Or that everyone who reads the Bible is an idiot? No.

The Bible for one has taught me a kind of divine cynicism. It shows us how humans fool each other and themselves. It teaches us to distrust humans and culture. Always a good thing. And it teaches us to study. The Bible isn't anti-reason. It simply demands that we distrust our fellow man and trust God's view of things.

What's wrong with a little authority about spiritual things? Doing without Sriptural authority is like remaking the wheel. If everyone started on their own wisdom path from scratch without looking to the works of their spiritual ancestors, we would all be starting out as cavemen. Why not say: "It is written that such and such a course is not good to take." Why not believe what other people have said? If the Bible tells us for instance that women should really be married before sleeping with men, why not believe it? God knows men are selfish, will abandon women, women will be raising children in povery. Why not trust it?

Anyone learning to read the Bible learns how to compare word to word, thought to thought, verse to verse. Even uneducated poor black grandmas and little kids learn to do this. We see a verse about sexual purity here. Then we see a verse which says a divorced man is like someone wearing the coat of a bloodshed victim (Malachi). Then we read a place where God says we must be satisfied with the breasts of the wife of our youth. Or that young men should avoide strange women. Or that when a woman is raped it is akin to murder. And all these little old ladies --including myself-- study those verses and come up with a general meaning.

Rational vs rational

Something else has to be clarified here:

The word "Rational" (as used by most people) has two distinct meanings.

A) It could refer to a thought pattern that does not operate in a logical manner.
B) It could refer to a conclusion arrived at that does not fit in with the listener's worldview.

The first meaning -- having to do with manner and pattern of a person's way of thinking-- can be useful for judging the Bible reader. But it doesn't really judge the Bible. There are many logical thinkers who read and believe the Bible. And there are many illogical thinkers who read and believer the Bible. Also, there are many logical thinkers who do not believe the Bible and many illogical thinkers who believe the Bible.

In the second case where "rational" refers to the conclusion -- whether logically or illogically arrived at-- then personal prejudices and worldview issues often come into play.


Stephen Hawking for instance may not believe in the Bible but he is a theist. Carl Sagan -- just as logical and perhaps not as smart-- is not a theist and simply did not believe in any kind of God. In a situation where someone is judging someone's rationality all sorts of questions can come up. Is the person thinking irrationally because he is insane? Because he has a different path to follow? Because he is "misinterpreting" some of the evidence/clues he sees?


Many Americans think Christians are irrational because they think the Christian is thinking in an unworldly way. But in Africa where the average person (Christian or otherwise) believes in the spirit world much more than the average American (Christian or otherwise) there wouldn't be a question about irrational thinking just because someone believes something that doesn't jibe with the scientific model of worldview -- closed universe and all that.

I've done many a thing that seems irrational and yet God and the Universe have continually shown me that I'm quite right. Indeed, I suspect that many a little Christian old lady (educated or not) has had the same experience and that's why they trust and love Jesus so much.

Three examples:

I once went into a GNC at the mall. A man walked past me. I heard "in my spirit" a voice that said: "This is so-and-so. He's the general manager of such-and-such a radio station." The name of there person and his title and his workplace. I walked over to the man and quite irrationally said, "Hi, are you so and so?" He said, "I am." I did not behave irrationally, mind you. I didn't go over and tell him that the holy spirit had told me who he was. So I had some sense. But still, it is kind of irrational to believe some weird bit of information one hears in one's spirit.

Another time, I was working on my novel Wind Follower (to be published in June). I decided on a whim to make the main character an epileptic and needed a name to call the illness. I decided on "the falling sickness." Wrote a scene. Got up from my computer. On a lark I turned on the TV and flipped through the channel. I saw some guys in togas. Shakespeare's Julius Ceasar. As I listened I heard one character say, "well you know Ceasar has the falling sickness."

Another time, I finished writing a scene where a character tells another character he should change his name from Stevie to Steve because Stevie sounds so childish. I went upstairs and although I NEVER turn the radio on at night, turned it on for some strange reasons. A guy was calling in to the DJ. He said, "My girlfriend thinks I should quit calling myself Stevie because it's too childish." Kid you not.


I remember one day about nine months after my older son was born. I was sitting in my room watching my son playing with blocks. I heard --in the way one hears these things-- in my spirit the clear words "rest." It was so clear that I looked around. I walked over to my son and he had taken the letters R E S T and placed them in perfect order forming the word rest. He was only nine months. I should have learned to rest. I didn't and not resting after childbirth proved to be very harmful to my health for about 20 years.

I remember once I got some money and I was wondering who to give my tithe to. I said a prayer, "Lord, who should I give this tithe to?"

Immediately the name of a friend across the country was impressed upon me. It was so strange to hear that name in my heart that I suddenly stood still. I thought, "that was weird!" Generally, guidance didn't come so quickly and the name had come so suddenly and so clearly after the prayer...I found myself thinking that the idea had come from my own mind. And yet, it was so weird to suddenly get this girl's name in my head. I decided to tithe the money to her.

Then, I said...I could send her a check...but I had bounced checks recently and I was bounce-wary. All I needed was to pay $50 to my bank for bouncing a check written as a gift to a friend, and then my friend's bank would also charge her for the bounce. So a gift check for $50 would cost $150 by the time everything was said and done. (Okay, I get nervous and like I said I was very nervous about bouncing a check.)

Then I thought I would send the money as cash. But then I got nervous about that. Cash might get lost in the mail. Then I thought about a money order. But I didn't want to go to the bank or the post office to write a money order. Hey, it's cold in winter in NY and I didn't want to deal with it.

I decided on pay-pal. But I had to wait until the check I had received cleared and went into my paypal account.

Anyway, one night about four days after this quandary and decision, I went online to check if my money was in paypal. It wasn't. Later that night, instead of going to bed, I went downstairs again and for some weird reason (thank you, God) turned on the computer and went online to paypal. The money was there!

I transferred the money from my paypal account to my friend's paypal account.

The next morning my friend emailed me. It seems that the night before -- the night i felt the need to as transfer the money to my friend's account -- my friend was driving home from the hospital with her sick husband. She was miles away from home. Maybe 40 miles. And had run out of gas. She had no money left in her checking account and on a whim (thank you, God) decided to check her paypal account. Voila, the money I had sent her was in it. She hadn't even expected it. But that money got her gas and got her home from the hospital.

I love when God does stuff like that. It makes me feel that yes I do hear from God. It makes my friend know that God is aware of her. It makes us both know that God is aware of the future and provides for the future in the present. Isn't our God good? IT just makes me so happy when stuff like this happens. And they happen all the time. Doesn't it just make you roll your eyes when some atheist says that only idiots think that God exists? Hey, if this kind of lovely stuff is what happens to idiots, may I be an idiot forever!

Thank you Jesus.

I cannot tell you the amount of times my life and my family's life have been saved or my children's life by trusting the irrational.

We Christians call that kind of thing "God winks." It the situation is death-defying, we call them "testimonies of God's protection." These events are odd and a Christian's trust in them is utterly irrational. But it gives us a feeling of being loved. And while everyone has some odd thing happen to them once in a while, these things tend to happen incredibly frequently to Bible-believers.

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