Band, Sunday Stuff

SOC: Jazz

I’m not a big fan of jazz.

But I’ve learned to be. Our youngest son plays jazz with his classmates at school.

Jazz “lives” for jazz. Hence the reason I call him “Jazz” on this blog.

He loves jazz band class. He has it every second semester and he says he will continue to take it “no matter what. It’s not negotiable, mom.”

Well, alrighty then.

Jazz sounds like a mess of different instruments doing their own thing to me. It sounds disjointed, messy, impromptu. I’ve never been crazy about it, but I can see why Jazz likes it now that I’ve been forced to sit through several of his concerts. There is something beautifully chaotic to jazz.

I’m starting to “get” it, I think.

Jazz played in a festival yesterday. I have a love/hate relationship with his music competitions. On the one hand, I’m extremely nervous for him. I want him, and his classmates, to perform well. I want them to WIN, but I’m not one of those crazy moms who do stupid and outlandish things to make sure that happens.

I just sit in the audience, wring my hands and nearly have a heart attack from the stress.

But on the other hand, I’m so PROUD of him. I’m proud of his musical abilities (he gets that from his dad), and I’m proud of him for having the courage to get up in front of an audience and first perform, and then be judged, first by the judges, then by the audience.

I try not to pay attention to the people around me as they watch my son perform. I can hear their remarks and though most of the comments are positive, there are a few that are not. I try not to get my hackles up when I hear someone give “constructive criticism”, but it’s hard not to morph into a mama bear and tear into the individual for “not understanding my son’s greatness!”

I try not to gush whenever it’s over and Jazz asks how he did. I try to be gentle in my own constructive criticism – it’s so hard to hear anything negative when you put yourself out there creatively. That I know because of the writing I post on this blog.

But I’ll be honest. The kids didn’t sound that great yesterday. They played three songs and two of them sounded decent, but one of them did not. Now granted, the kids haven’t had that much time to prepare – they were out a whole week due to the snow storm that came through, but I also sensed that the kids weren’t trying that hard, either. I don’t know if it was because they are getting burned out or if they’re feeling insecure because they didn’t feel like they were ready for this festival.

It always amazes me that the kids can even play at all – they really don’t have that much time to prepare before competition starts. So I’m keeping a stiff upper lip about this year’s jazz performances – the season is still very young.

*ding* Time’s up.


This was my 5 minute Stream of Consciousness Sunday post. It’s five minutes of your time and a brain dump. Want to try it?

Abundant Life

Teaching: Adopted by God

Every Sunday I provide videos and valuable links to the Truth or Tradition teachings. We’ve been following the Truth or Tradition teachings for many years now and they have truly blessed our family. We have found peace and happiness through our beliefs and we walk confidently for God. My hope, by passing on this information to you, is that what you find here, or on the Truth or Tradition website, will guide you to a better, more blessed and abundant life.

If you would like to read my views on religion and how we got started with the ministry, you can read this.

Let’s get started:

FAQ:I know that as Christians we are “born again of incorruptible seed” (1 Pet. 1:23). Why then do several places in the Church Epistles speak of our being “adopted” by God?

The Greek word translated “adoption” is huiothesia, and it occurs only five times in the New Testament, all in the Church Epistles (Rom. 8:15, 23; 9:4; Gal. 4:5; Eph. 1:5). According to Vine’s Lexicon it means: “the place and condition of a son given to one to whom it does not naturally belong.” Louw and Nida’s Greek Lexicon says: “to formally and legally declare that someone who is not one’s own child is henceforth to be treated and cared for as one’s own child, including complete rights of inheritance.” Huiothesia literally means, “to place as a son.”

“Adoption” clearly indicates that a Christian is a member of God’s family. In the Roman culture, the adopted son or daughter had four major changes: a change of family, a change of name, a change of home, and a change of responsibilities. [1]

Most importantly, by using the word “adoption,” God emphasizes that salvation is permanent for the Christian, which is why it appears only in the Church Epistles. Some versions translate huiothesia as “sonship,” but we believe that is not as good as “adoption.” While it is true that someone adopted into the family attains sonship (the status of a son), “adoption” is more accurate to the Greek meaning of the word, and it correctly expresses the fact that the adopted child is permanently placed in the family.

Birth seems so much more desirable than adoption that it is fair to ask why God would even use “adoption.” The answer is that the Romans recognized that when a baby was born, “you got what you got,” whether you liked it or not. This would include the sex of the child, birthmarks, etc. Thus, according to Roman law, a naturally born baby could be disowned from the family. However, people adopting a child knew exactly what they were getting, and no one adopted a child unless that specific child was wanted as a family member, so according to law an adopted child could not be disowned. He or she was permanently added to the family. Many early believers were Roman citizens, and using the word “adoption” was one of God’s ways to let the Church know that He chose the children brought into His family, and they could not be taken from it. The Roman historian William M. Ramsay writes:

“The Roman-Syrian Law-Book…where a formerly prevalent Greek law had persisted under the Roman Empire—well illustrates this passage of the Epistle. It actually lays down the principle that a man can never put away an adopted son, and that he cannot put away a real son without good ground. It is remarkable that the adopted son should have a stronger position than the son by birth, yet it was so.” [2]

Roman customs and laws differed from those of the Jews, and it is by understanding Jewish laws and customs that we see why “birth” is used in Peter and James, and “adoption” is used in Romans, Galatians, and Ephesians:

“Among the Jews, adoption had no importance, and hardly any existence. The perpetuity of the family, when a man died childless, was secured in another way, viz., the levirate. Only sons by blood were esteemed in the Hebrew view.” [3]

The “levirate” that Ramsay refers to was the law stating that if a man died childless, his wife was to marry the man’s brother, and then her oldest son would be counted as the child of the dead man and carry his name (Deut. 25:5-10; Mark 12:18-27).

God made salvation permanent for Christians, which was radically different from before the Church started on the Day of Pentecost. He worked very hard to communicate that change to His Church, which is composed of both former Jews and former Gentiles (when a Jew or Gentile believes, he or she does not lose his nationality, but in God’s eyes is now a Christian, a new creation in Christ). Thus, in Scripture that has a distinctively Jewish flavor, such as Peter and James, God speaks of “birth” (anagennao, 1 Pet. 1:3, 23; apokueo, James 1:18), because birth and genealogy were very important to the Jews. They would immediately understand that a child “born” into God’s family was a permanent member of His family. God also uses a word for “birth” (paliggenesi) in Titus 3:5. It is noteworthy that all three of these Greek words for birth are unique to writings to the Christian Church, another indication of the permanence of Christian salvation.

However, in books such as Romans, Ephesians, and Galatians, which were addressed to people with a Gentile background, He also speaks of “adoption.” The same truth is communicated by both terms: the Christian becomes a permanent member of the family of God, because he is forever sealed in Christ (Eph. 1:13), and has a guaranteed hope (2 Cor. 1:22; 5:5; Eph. 1:14; NIV, ESV). While no verse in the Old Testament even hints that one day God would make salvation permanent, the permanence of salvation for Christians is the hallmark of the Sacred Secret.

This total change to permanent salvation is clearly taught in Galatians 4:1-5. The first three verses of the chapter show that before Jesus came, though the people of God were heirs, they were equal to slaves, being under guardians and enslaved to the basic principles of the world. God’s equating Old Testament believers to minor children equal to slaves is very important, because a slave is not guaranteed a place in the family. Galatians goes on to say that when the fullness of time came, God sent His Son (3:4) so that we might receive “adoption” into His family.

Galatians 4:5 then says: “[God sent His Son] in order that he might redeem those who were under the law in order that we might receive the adoption.” The two “in order that” clauses show that for people to be adopted into God’s family, Christ first had to redeem them, and before Christ redeemed them they were under the law. Without Jesus paying the redemption price, no adoption was possible. Thus no Old Testament believer was adopted into God’s family because adoption was not available yet. Adoption was available only after Christ died, and God started bring people into His family by “adopting” and “birth” on the Day of Pentecost, 50 days after Christ died on the cross. Thus, permanent salvation was not available until Christ died, and was first made available when the Church started on the Day of Pentecost. For further study on the permanence of Christian salvation, see our book, The Gift of Holy Spirit: The Power to be Like Christ, Appendix A: “The Administration of the Sacred Secret.”

You can read the original article here.

If you have any questions, or would like to learn more about God’s wonderful message, please visit the Truth or Tradition website. You can also keep track of the ministry through their Facebook page, their YouTube Channel, or follow them on Twitter.

Thanks for reading.

(Comments have been turned off. The information is here to inform and bless you. God granted you the gift of free will – take it or leave it).

More from Write From Karen

Saturday Stuff

On Loan

The woman’s face on the card mocked her. She placed her thumb over the tiny photo and inserted it into the machine.

“Hurry up!” her boyfriend hissed while keeping an eye out for anyone approaching the tiny, glass room.

Melanie ignored him and entered in the four-digit security code. She finished punching in her demands and waited.

The machine whirred and clicked, but nothing came out.

“Are you freaking kidding me?” Dylan shouted.

“Shh!” Melanie stared at the machine. She jumped as it came to life and the ATM machine began dispensing twenties.

Dylan smiled.

She scooped up the cash but felt sad.

“I’m sorry, grandma.”





Write up to 100 words, fact or fiction….

This is a themed writing meme hosted by Jenny Matlock. The goal is to write something that does not exceed 100 words (not including said prompt). The prompt is in italics above.

Dear Diary

Dear Diary: Feeling Good

Dear Diary: I’m proud of myself.

I’ve been back on the workout wagon and I’m feeling REALLY good. Better than I’ve felt in YEARS.

As soon as my six weeks post-surgery restriction was up, I started working out again. I’ve been quite addicted to the Nintendo Wii’s EA Sports Active program. I’m currently doing the 30-day challenge and I’m having a blast. (I just finished number 15 last night). It is SO FUN to watch my (well-toned) avatar move along with me that I quite forget that my muscles are screaming and straining.

The workouts are only about 20 minutes long, but I’m quite winded after they’re over. The sessions typically end with a jog around the track and if there’s one thing I’ve never been very good at, it was running. But I’ve been sticking to it and I can tell it’s starting to pay off.

My clothes are fitting nicely again.

In fact, I’m wearing my skinny jeans again and though they still bite me around the waist line, they aren’t so uncomfortable that I can’t breathe. (Like they did when I first put them on).

I bought a pair of white jeans from Land’s End the other day (I KNOW! I’m almost embarrassed to admit that), and they fit perfectly. I can’t wait to wear them after Memorial Day.


It is so nice to be able to go to the bathroom normally again!!!!!!! I’m sorry for bringing this up, but it’s been such a huge problem in my life for so many years that now that it’s been resolved and I’m passing, er, stuff on a daily basis, I feel like a new woman. I thank God that I was able to finally get my intestinal issues resolved and I thank God for the wonderful doctor who fixed me.

Also? I got my hair cut off. I had about four inches whacked off and I love it. I can literally blow it dry, spray it with a bit of hairspray and call it a hairdo. It’s been so nice to have a “style” again and I will likely keep it this length forEVER.

Or until I can’t stand looking at it anymore – which ever comes first.

Life is good. I haven’t felt this great in years. The only thing I wish I could now somehow “fix” is my fatigue. It’s better now that I’m working out and I’ve been taking iron and calcium once again (I had to stop taking it for a while because it would only serve to clog things up in there and God knows I didn’t need things to move any more slowly), but I still have days, like today, where all I have the energy to do is just stare at the wall.

To say this annoys me would be putting it nicely. I’m just hoping that it will level off once my body finds a new normal from all of this exercising (that’s what happens with my appetite – I am RAVENOUS for a few days after starting an exercise program and then it levels off and my appetite goes back down to a manageable level).

But wow. The fatigue is mind numbing sometimes. And I mean that literally. I. Just. Can’t. Think.

I haven’t been sleeping that great. I’m a light sleeper, so everything wakes me up. Last night for example, I woke up because our neighbor’s stupid dog started barking at 3:00 a.m. Then I had to nudge Kevin because his sleep apnea mask had come off and he was snoring in my ear, then I woke up because I was hot (another by-product of my working out again. Which won’t level off, I’ll simply have to deal with. I’m one of those people who profusely sweat standing still), so I woke up this morning feeling really groggy and lethargic.

Anyway, if fatigue is the only physical ailment I have to contend with, I’ll take it. I know there are so many people out there that are forced to deal with so many serious physical problems that I feel rather stupid even bringing it up.

I work out every day, except Tuesdays and Fridays. There is really no reason why I picked those days as my days off, it just sort of worked out (get it?) that way. I do about twenty minutes of EA Sports Active and then right afterward, I get on the treadmill and speed walk for 40 minutes while watching an episode from a TV show. (I don’t watch TV – I rent the DVD’s from Netflix. Right now, I’m watching “Private Practice” and I will be starting the “Heros” series this weekend).

Though I try and watch what I eat, I’m not going overboard. I still have a daily sweet of some sort (or not – the point is, I can’t deprive myself or I go crazy and obsess about it) and try and balance my calorie intake (and all that really means is – I had a donut today which means I can’t have any candy or any other junk food for the day) and that’s it. That’s all I do. I keep busy so I don’t think about stuffing my face.

Then I see results. My clothes start fitting better. My poochy belly shrinks and that motivates me to continue.

And did I mention I’m feeling pretty good? 🙂

I have no idea how long this exercise spurt will last – sometimes it lasts for months, sometimes only weeks, but I feel good now and I’m going to hang on to that feeling for as long as I possibly can.

Friday Fun

Aloha Friday: Which is Harder?

Aloha! Kailani is the brain-child behind this fun Friday meme. If you feel inclined to answer my question, please post your answer in the comment section. Sound fun? Of course it does! Want to answer more questions? Hop over to An Island Life and play along!

(Please feel free to answer the question below, even if you’re not playing Aloha Friday!)

My question:

Which is harder: Wife or Mother? Why?.

I plan on blogging about this subject this next week. In the meantime, I’d love to hear your thoughts on it.

And if you’d rather not comment, but would like to voice your opinion, please participate in the poll below:

(Sorry RSS readers – I accidentally hit publish before I was ready to. So if this appears twice in your reader – my apologizes!)