There’s Really Nothing to Report

Falling leaves
(NOT my picture. Puh-lease. I wish).

What a beautiful day! ………. To stay in and get some chores done.


I didn’t want to. I had to. Since we’ve been gone these past three weekends, my house was looking like something out of a horror movie – only with more color and fewer ghosts. But I prevailed, ladies and gentlemen, I got everything on my to-do list done this weekend.

Dry mopped the hardwood floor
Mopped the kitchen floor
Straightened up the bedroom (which really means I put MY laundry away. Kevin always puts his away).

Wait. As I’m sitting here writing this I’ve noticed one thing I didn’t get done today – my desk. Is gross. And I WILL get MY corner cleaned up before the end of the day.

As God is my witness, I SHALL clean this corner up today! (Just channeling a little ‘Gone with the Wind’ there).

Anyway. I feel like I actually accomplished something today, which is more than I can say for MOST of my weekends, thank you very much.

We have one more band weekend coming up. We’ll be making a one-day trip to Columbia Missouri next weekend -that’s Jazz’s last band competition. It’s at Mizzou and hopefully our kids can take 1st place. We’ve done really well this season, but it would be the icing on the cake if we brought home a 1st place trophy.

I’m sort of glad the season is winding down (I bet you are too). Though I have SO MUCH FUN traveling around and cheering them on, it’s exhausting. Especially when you start a new job in an industry you know nothing about and are trying to focus and learn as much as you can in a short amount of time that your brain is mush by the time you come home and it’s all you can do to keep your eyes open to finish dinner with your family.

So. Yeah. The job is going well.


No really. An email was sent out to the clinic on Thursday letting everyone know that I was “ready” to take charge of two doctors. This means I’m in charge of these doctors’ patients and anything schedule related comes to me. I’m getting all sorts of voicemails from patients wanting to either cancel appointments, reschedule appointments or, they want to make an appointment, which requires research on my part before I can make those appointments. For you see, I work for a group of neurosurgeons and they are not like primary care physicians – you can’t just make an appointment to see them for every little ache and pain, there are certain things that I have to look for in order to make that appointment. And if those things are not present, then I have to “flag” the nurse (which is like an instant message system) and ask them if it’s okay to schedule them.

Because I’m a peon and am only paid to do what I’m told. Which is FINE. I’m OKAY with that. I just have to be careful how much initiative I take on.

So I’m learning a lot about this medical field and picking up new terms and learning about new procedures and tests every day. I have to say, it’s damn interesting and no two patients are alike as far as what they need done. It’s challenging and completely absorbs my focus and attention and I really love it.

And I’m not just saying that – I really do LOVE my job.

I’m starting (and only JUST starting) to get a handle on my new routine. My energy level is starting to slowly catch up with my duties and I’ll be used to this new lifestyle in no time. The one thing that I have the hardest time with is the fact that I’m isolated from my family. It’s like I’ve been sequestered and I’m quite literally stepping into a whole new world, separate from them and definitely out of my comfort zone.

But it’s exactly what I needed. I felt like my brain was going soft and it feels SO GOOD to be using my brain again.

Or what little brain matter I have, that is.

Even though my shift starts at 8:30, I’m going in at 8:00 for the next three mornings to make up for the time I’ll have to take off Thursday morning to get my tooth fixed. (I broke it last weekend). I’m thinking I’m going to regret making my appointment for so early in the morning because this means I’ll have to go to work with a numb mouth and will likely be talking weird.

Oh well. I’m getting used to coping with obstacles, what’s one more, right?

Update on my guys:

Kevin has been on a mission to get Dude out in public more. Dude is still going to the office every day and they go out to lunch twice a week. They go shopping at various places whenever they go out – they even went out to the driving range and hit some golf balls. (I have a video of that coming soon). Dude is a very introverted individual and Kevin is hoping that by getting him out and around people more, he’ll loosen up a bit and not be so freaked out whenever he gets a job. He hasn’t had any more interviews but it hasn’t been for lack of trying – he’s been applying someplace nearly every day and Kevin keeps track of his spread sheet and makes him re-apply at places. It’s just a matter of time before the kid gets a job. But it might not be until this crappy economy turns around and I’m predicting that won’t happen until Obama is voted out of office.


In the meantime, Dude has been getting his documents ready to submit to a vocational college. He’s planning on taking two computer classes next semester, so that will be enough to keep him busy until he gets a job. It’ll be interesting to see how he juggles his schedule whenever he gets a job AND is going to college.

Kevin is pursuing some client leads and has been doing well. The word is getting out and he’s becoming more and more busy. It’s just a matter of time before his business really takes off the ground. If you know of anyone who needs a good accountant, give him a buzz! He specializes in elder care, so if you have an elderly person in your family that needs some accounting help (not just taxes, but paying bills, etc), he can help! (

Jazz is finishing up the first quarter. He’ll be getting rid of the following classes: History of Baseball (which he actually enjoyed, believe it or not) and Math Functions, which is a pre-Calculus class. I’m not sure what classes are coming up, but the kids really seem to enjoy switching out classes every quarter and semester. Our school district is considering getting rid of the 4-block schedule set up and I think that would be a HUGE mistake! Having only four classes per quarter is a lot more manageable than having the same SEVEN classes all year long. We’re only one of two high schools in our district that is set up this way and everyone has really loved it. It would make a lot of parents and students upset if they eliminated it.

So. All of this to say, we’re doing well.

Prompt Fiction, Saturday Stuff

An Overgrown Garden

Carmen tried not to look guilty. “I planted a little story seed …” she held up two fingers, very close together, to illustrate her point.

“You mean you lied,” I shot back.

“I didn’t lie, per se,” she swallowed, “I just didn’t tell him the whole truth.”

“You’re an idiot. What do you think lying is??”

“Oh, shut up.”

“That’s like saying, ‘you’re a little pregnant.’ Either you are, or you aren’t. Either you’re honest or you’re not.”

“I like story seed – it sounds better.”

“Seed my foot. You have a full-blown garden.”

“Pass the hoe,” she giggled.

“You need a backhoe,” I snorted.




Listen to the audio version.


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 bold.

Abundant Life

Teaching: Gnostic Ideas have had an Influence on Christianity

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:

It is good for all of us to know something about the first-century Gnostic controversy, because this controversy continues to this very day, though in a different form. Gnosticism, and its cousin Neoplatonism (or Platonism), changed the face of Christianity by introducing ideas that have more affinity with pagan religions and philosophies than with the Judeo-Christian heritage represented by the Bible. This influence moved the Church away from its Hebrew heritage, notably regarding:

1. One, and only one, God. Gnostics and Neoplatonists influenced some Christians to embrace a God beyond being who could have multiple personalities.

2. The appreciation of Creation as reflecting the work of a good God, and the natural world as integrated with the supernatural world. Gnostics believed that the material world was the work of a lesser, evil deity, and therefore all that is material is unholy and ungodly.

3. The balance of knowledge and experience, with the idea that God is relational and reveals Himself in covenant with His people. Gnostics viewed “God” as beyond being, so to call God “the supreme being” would be to limit His greatness. This God was a far cry from the personal God of the Bible.

The Gnostic and Neoplatonic influence factored into the development of Trinitarian doctrine, as we document in our book One God & One Lord (Chapter 16). This influence is evident in such pro-Trinitarian arguments as: “God is mysterious,” or “If you believe in the Trinity you will lose your mind, but if you don’t believe in it you will lose your soul.” Secret knowledge, though not necessarily rational and biblically accurate knowledge, was the key to one advancing toward the Gnostic godhead. Trinitarian theologians continue to be the only ones who can explain or defend the Trinity, while most pastors and churchgoers just leave the complicated doctrine to the theologians. [For a website dedicated to the truth of One God & One Lord, visit]

Traditionally Jewish affirmation of the natural realm is exemplified in its concept of “kosher” foods. God made the food, but the world has become corrupted by sin. Therefore, food must be examined and blessed by a rabbi to be okay to eat. The same is true for sex. Rather than taking the perspective that many Gnostic and Platonic Christians have through the centuries, that sex is unclean in itself, Jews sanctified sex within marriage and considered it “pure” or “undefiled” (Heb. 13:4).

Gnostic tendencies toward a non-human Jesus in the early Church led monks and scribes who copied the manuscripts to add to the text to make it clearer that Jesus was a real human being. Some had been influenced to believe that Jesus did not sweat, defecate, or perform other normal human functions that were considered beneath him as the god-man. To counteract this, these scribes would add to the text things that would emphasize his humanity. Such is the case with the record in Luke 22:44 that depicts Jesus as having sweat like blood falling from his forehead. In his book, The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture, Bart Ehrman well documents this as a forgery. [1]

Gnostic teachings were being widely disseminated by the end of the first century, and John the apostle addressed this teaching in his Gospel. One interesting way that God inspired him to do this was by recording the miracle of the changing of water into wine in Cana of Galilee. This would have been a slap in the face to Gnostics, who had no way to explain why he would do a miracle like that. Christians who legalistically deny themselves and others wine or other forms of alcohol also have a tough time with that record. Jewish teaching in the Tanakh (the Old Testament) shares both the upside and the downside of drinking. Wine “…that gladdens the heart of man…” (Ps. 104:15; Zech. 10:7), but is also “…a mocker and beer a brawler; whoever is led astray by them is not wise” (Prov. 20:1). This affirms that God has provided fermented beverages, but expects humankind to be wise and not abuse them.

There are also forms of the denial of the physical body that are characteristic of Gnostic Christianity. For instance, even today some Christians feel that dancing is of the Devil, and who forbid even liturgical dance. But the Jewish perspective, and no doubt a part of first-century Church’s practice, was to rejoice before the Lord’s presence in dance. It is possible to dance using movements that are not sensual or provocative, and there is no biblical reason to believe that to so employ the body more fully in worship would be a sin.

There is no reason why today’s environmental movement should be led by atheistic evolutionists. Both Jews and Christians have a vested interest in the preservation of the wilderness areas and protecting our environment as the handiwork of God. The fact that sin has entered the world does not make the Creation of God unrecognizable as a masterpiece. We can clearly see the majesty of the Creator in the amazing beauty of the natural world, and should want to protect it as much as is reasonable. There are few things as awe-inspiring as to view pristine wilderness knowing that it is the work of God.

Another way that Gnostic or Platonic Christianity denies the material world is the way it teaches that the soul is immortal. The body, then, is considered unnecessary equipment, compromising the reality of, or the need for, resurrection. True biblical Christianity sees the body and soul as integral to one another, and neither being able to exist without the other. As we argue in our book Is There Death After Life?, believing in death as a graduation to a higher spiritual realm is not Christian as much as it is Gnostic and Platonic philosophy that undermines an appreciation of this earthly life. How many people have lost the will to live in a fight against sickness or injury believing that their death would usher them immediately into the presence of the Lord? [For further study see our topic on What Happens if You Die?]

Another way that Gnostic or Platonic Christianity still rears its head is when we see ministers given a pass by their denominations or churches when they fail to integrate their faith and ministries with their personal, private, and family lives. Their faith and ministry should be authenticated by their family life, not discredited. The ancient Jewish paradigm was expressed in this maxim: “To know the relationship of the rabbi with God, look in the face of his wife.”

1 Timothy 3:4, 5 and 12 say that to be an overseer or a deacon in the Church one must “…manage his children and his household well.” Ministers who detach themselves from their most intimate family relationships and think they can still be effective ministers have succumbed to Gnostic thinking that divorces belief from behavior.

We are called to integrate our “regular life” with our “spiritual life” so that the two are seamless. God is interested in the single sparrow, and He is also interested in every detail of our lives whether seemingly “spiritual” or not. To serve the true God is to be called to live an integrated life, where one’s faith and practice are integrated, producing fruit that is apparent to all.

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.

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