Said yes to prayer. After months of wishing I could smack a man with a big stick.

Often, I can hear God laughing at me. You know those kind of times, right? When I make my own decision, my own declaration and I sound like an over-indulged, spoiled person instead of the Daughter of the King, the Lord God Almighty.

A couple of Sunday’s ago our church began a witnessing focus where we were encouraged to pray for the one person God put on our hearts to pray for. Specifically for them to come to know Christ in a personal relationship. First, I confess I prayed and thought, “Okay, I am good. No one…”

Then God whispered a name. I groaned. Right there in church I literally groaned and began to argue with the Lord.

This particular person is someone I have prayed for on and off until last year for about a decade. Some things he has done there is pictorial evidence of. About a year ago he was arrested for allegedly physically abusing his young son. Understand this, at that point my heart was too hurt (knowing quite well the child involved as well as his other children) to keep the praying going.

God never said, “Donna you can stop”. I think He understood all the circumstances and gave me a brief reprieve. Now, this man’s name was being whispered in my ear.

“Are you sure that’s You, Lord? I mean, You know what this man has done. And IT IS CHILD ABUSE GOD. Surely You do not mean I have to start praying for him again?”

Again his name echoed in my heart.

Then the best argument against my praying for this one man I had, I thought. “But God, I do not think having me pray for him is in his best interest. All I’ve wanted to do for a year is smack the man upside his head with my big stick.”

For the third time God repeated His request.

I knew if I wanted to be in God’s will in this I was going to have to follow through with what God wanted. Around the lump in my throat (all those excuses/reasons I had to not pray for this young man) I submitted.

After day one I have not had any resentment praying for this guy. I do not recount his sins even those against people I love. Proof God is in this praying.

God is still laughing about the big stick though. (It is two 1/2″ dowel rods duck taped together at the end of one against the end of the other. I use it daily to reach things I can not get to from my wheelchair. Like the light switch.)

Let’s be honest. Christian or not, it is not easy to pray for people who you perceive as a threat to you, your family, your faith or your way of life. Sometimes our perceptions are wrong. Sometimes it is the result of realities.

Finishing up my prayer time and Bible study time with God in these wee small hours of the morning and beginning to pray for another person it was hard to submit to doing, I hear God laughing. “Have we not been in this particular conversation before?”

“Well, yes God and I will do as You have asked. But, God, I do still have my big stick”.

—Donna

…”apple of my eye”.

Our nieces and nephews are a great source of love, comfort and joy for their funcle (fun uncle) and I. On a recent occasion we were together one of eight-year-old nieces was in a mood. She was hot. She was cold. Her hair should be up, no she wanted it down. Why was the drive taking so long? Why were we there so quickly? She was finding little happiness in anything.

I called her over and gave her a huge hug. Kissed her forehead and said, “Now what’s going on with you Miss Moody?” Nothing. No reply.

I told her, “I see something has you unhappy and I’m sorry. I just want you to know you are the apple of my eye.” From her face hidden on my shoulder she peeked up at me.

“What’s Bubba?”

“Oh, he’s the orange,” I said.

She popped up and grinned. “The orange?”

She sat back down a happier child. Proceeded to eat her seven shrimp and five of mine, plus a piece of broccoli from her funcle’s plate. All her crankiness did not melt away but she giggled more and lunch was a happier experience for us all.

I understood how she felt. How often do I feel the need to feel God’s arms holding me and hear Him tell me He loves me? All the time. On this day whatever had our niece in mood was set right by the reminder she was extra special to me. She is extra special. Everyone of our nine nieces and nephews are special to us. We love the love and joy they bring to us and we try to give them love and joy too.

Today, look up to God and ask Him for a hug and reminder of how much He loves you. There is no shame in asking for what you need. Then pray about the person in your life that needs the same reminder from you.

It will change everything if you let it.

—-Donna

…where are you people of integrity?

Been thinking about elected officials a lot, especially the last two presidential elections. For the last 20 years as I have witnessed the caliber of candidates running for official offices I find myself asking “Who is their right mind would run for any office”? Especially for President of the United States. “Who is worthy of holding the office?” “Whose life, not just their own lives but their family’s and anyone else who knows them, can withstand the scrutiny?”

Should your life survive the search for dirt or any thing that could be blown up to be dirt it doesn’t matter. Your opposition, whether a person or a political party or the media, will gleefully invent one on you. Then these same people will never let the argument against you winning die. Ever.

No, I am not suggesting that just anyone should be able to be the President of the United States, a senator, a representative, governor, supreme court judge or dog catcher. These people in these leadership positions in our country should be men and women of integrity, honesty, sound judgment and whose life reflects wise discernment. They should also not be a person who has been on the wrong side of the law or who takes the law into their own hands. Their work and life should give them the experience to take what they know, listening skills, and a sense of right from wrong and put it to work for “we the people”.

Every person on planet Earth is a flawed human being. Because of that we cannot live perfect lives. Show me one man/woman who makes the claim they are perfect, never making a mistake or failing to exercise good decision making skills and I will show you a liar.

In John 8: 1-11 Jesus was questioned by the teachers of the law and the Pharisees who had brought a woman accused of adultery before him for his take on the matter.

Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground “When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, ‘If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.’ ”

The Holy Bible, New International Version, 1973, 1978; The Zondervan Corporation.

Who fits these qualifications? In the movie Courageous the dad whose young daughter was killed in an automobile accident asks a large congregation, Where are you men of integrity? Since it was a movie multiple men stood. Real life is not a movie and can not be scripted. My question though is still, “Where are you people of integrity? You people of character and sound judgment? Who will stand in the gap* for all American citizens and not be bought off?”

*”I looked for a man among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found none.” (Ezekiel 22:30 NIV)

The Holy Bible, New International Version, 1973,1978; The Zondervan Corporation.

Can we really ask for candidates and leaders who are perfect? In doing so we, if honest, would eliminate everyone before they signed the paperwork stating their intention to run for office. I have felt like I was casting a vote for the least of two evils for the last twenty plus years. Prior to those years I didn’t exercise good judgment when voting. Not quite understanding the connection between my vote and the weight it carried when it came to running this country.

For example, I remember voting for Bill Clinton once. Why? Because I agreed with his policies? Proposed ideas? No, he was a guest on Arsenio Hall’s late night talk show and he played the saxophone. I thought it was so cool that a president would be so “normal” so “cool”. I learned a powerful lesson in that thought process.

Where are candidates who possess character? (Character as in truthful, doing the right thing in a situation or standing up to the influence of evil to do the right thing.) Not character as in, “What a character they are” that everyone laughs and jokes about. The latter we have more than enough of!

Right now I can not name one politician that I would put my trust in. Not one. I try to understand people’s reasons for voting for someone and I end up shaking my head. Here in our state we elected a former SEC football coach to be a senator. He worked in the football arena for 40 years. But his coaching is not a record on which to base a political career. He was even a legal resident of Florida when he agreed to throw his cap into the senate race. This man was not qualified to run and yet because citizens of our state were sick of the one he was running against, the coach won easily.

A consequence of political games is that in the event of and aftermath of bad leadership American’s are sick and tired of games as usual. We have no one to truly trust. In the lack of someone standing in the gap for us, we are hurling ourselves off the edges of cliffs and there are no safety nets.

I repeat, “Where are those people of integrity who we need to help seek political office”? They will not be found trying to bully anyone with an opinion or way of life that differs from their own, They will not be found breaking into any thing, a federal, state, city or personal piece of property. They will not be found setting fire to businesses. They will not be found murdering anyone whether in seemingly righteous anger or any other kind of anger. They can not be found among criminals. They cannot be found in abusing the power of any badge or office. They cannot be found if among those who have no respect for all life.

—Donna

…Help! This isn’t who I brought home!

Art & quote by dfav.

Photo filters.

Posting pictures of our pets, flowers or quotes as profile pictures on social media all the time.

Posting pictures of people other than ourselves and claiming the one pictured is us. (You do know this is the first move of a catfisher, right?)

Weaves. Wigs. Toupees.

Artifical nails.

Shapewear. Shoe lifts. Knock-offs.

Cushioned “help” in the buttocks and chest area.

Colored contact lenses.

Fat injections. Botox. Liposuction. Cool sculpture.

(This is not an exhaustive list.)

These are all things that in my opinion alter our appearance, often drastically. Or leads other people to believe we are not who we actually are. Perhaps not singularly as much as multiples of them in/on the same person.

Picture with me two people, complete strangers, meeting somewhere sharing a meal, chatting and exchanging phone numbers. Or maybe sharing this special date via Skype or some similar program. Time passes and eventually they physically meet and are alone. Can you see the surprise when Person A begins taking off all the artifical? By the time Person B has a look at the real Person A they do not know whether to stay and get to know this “new” person or run for the nearest Uber driver.

Or maybe when Person A gets finished with their reveal Person B begins theirs?

As members of the human race we go to a lot of work and spend a lot of time and money covering up what we look like. Denying even who we really are. Technology, inventors, scientists and some doctors have spent a lot of time helping us. What other “good things” could have been discovered while all these intelligent minds were rushing products to the shelves to help us hide. What good could have come from that time and effort being invested into other areas?

I know, I know, you want to look your best. Who honestly can even think its an even playing field when some humans are “born beautiful.” All the well meant and best intended advice that “you are beautiful where it matters, on the inside” does not usually translate into a date any night of the week. Looks also matter in the employment field. That or the money to be connected and so you can name drop or smile your way into a great job.

Do not all these things we do to ourselves give us equal opportunity? No. That’s a 100% honest and unvarnished piece of truth. There are hundreds of things that can keep someone from having the “big success” in career, social life, marriage, social economic status. Looks is one of them. All these items to alter your appearance? To project a person you are not on the inside? Do they help? Maybe. Depends on the people you are trying to impress. Then I question who is this person so turned by a pretty face or a fat checking account or a well known surname?

Then you spend even more time keeping up the image, pretending everything is perfectly okay, you are on top of every square inch of your world. With each second that ticks and tocks away deep down you are constantly see-sawing between all you have created to be you (the lies) and who you are (the truth).

Regardless of how much “magic” one manages to purchase to give them opportunties that felt to be impossible one thing is status quo, inside you are who you are. Sure, you can change bad habits, diet, get more education, move up the financial and social status ladders but those aren’t “quick fixes”. These changes require hours and hours of determination, dedication, hard work, scarifice and money.

How long before the artifical changes are revealed as just one big lie? Come on, admit it. Do you know who looks back at you from that mirror? The one you do a mental checklist in before you go out into the world?

The illusion is even easier to pull off for a longer time with the internet and especially the pandemic going on across the world. We are becoming faces behind a computer screen instead of flesh and bone people.

Counting myself as an “ugly girl” my offense in the artifical “not me” would be when I had the funds I had gel nails and I’ve worn a wig a couple times. Once to hide damaged hair from medical issues and yes, once to gain more attention at a Navy Officer’s Club in my 20’s. (Yes, I know how that wig worked it’s magic. It had a life of its own. It became my identify.) I got tired of that wig though. Tired of keeping up the pretense the intensive curly long mane screamed I had become.

Then I got tired of the second wig because it was so hot in humidity ripened 100 degree weather. Even though this time it was a much more day-to-day, much shorter wig I put it in a box tucked away somewhere.

A lack of funds meant a choice between artifical nails or bills getting paid, so the nails went to the by-way.

Honestly, too I am thinking of again wearing a wig and with medication ruining nails I once could grow for myself, I long for them too. For what reason? Fifty-six or not, I still want to look in the mirror and see a woman with hair. Not splitting or breaking a nail picking up a paperclip would be wonderful too. Maybe that’s why everyone else does it too. Medical reasons. Keeping a spouse happy (dangerous reason). It just makes you happy.

Either way it saddens me to witness the great by-pass of true realness. We joke about it. The 6’2″, well built, ruggedly handsome man on the computer screen turning out to be a 5’6″, pudgy man living in his parent’s basement. Or the incredibly beautiful female with perfect skin, hair, nails, clothes and body shape who really looks like the average woman with fussy hair, not-so-perfect body and a chip in her nail polish now and then. For just a few seconds lets forget all our reasons for being artifically attractive. What does this drive communicate?

What does it say to our daughters? What lengths are we teaching them to go to in order to “have a partner/companion”? What are we showing our sons to measure a woman by? Are we showing our children that whatever it is we are trying to “overcome” in our lives it is something or someone elses fault?

What are we saying to society as a whole? Do whatever it takes to level that playing field? Better yet put yourself in a higher position to catch the prize and if you haul tons of grudges, hatred and anger with you so what? Does it matter if you crush anyone you came upon? Once you are on top you will be kind then? Life is never going to be all the same for everyone. Everyone’s mind, physical make-up, soul and hearts are not the same. Everyone’s motives are not the same. Are we human beings or have we been replaced by some yet unknown artifical intelligence?

It reminds me of faternity and sorority hazing. Whenever I would ask a full fledged member why the degredation, humilitation and pain were necessary to become a “brother or sister” I got bluntly honest answers. Bottom line always came down to, “I went through it so they have to do worse. I suffered so now they suffer even more.” Never have understood that. Not sure I ever will. If every pledge group is treated more harshly than the previous as some revenge or payback how long can it continue?

These events in a persons life I believe reveals their true self.

  • Being in a situation where your dying is the likely outcome.
  • Having the opportunity to make a change and doing it. Will you treat everyone you perceive as mistreating you the way you want them to treat you?
  • Marriage.
  • Becoming a parent.
  • Standing before God for judgment.

Why bring your attention to such a trivial matter? Who really cares if humans “fake” a bit, it is not hurting anyone right? I propose it is.

I can not feel satisifed with myself if I am constantly seeking something else I can add, raise, suck out or tuck away on my body. I only feel that okayness with who I am and what I look like if I have aligned my heart with God the Father. There are times when I question who I am, what I look like and how much more my medical issues will take from me. I learned the hardest way possible that when we let our careers define us, when they are who we are the time will come when that career will be stripped from you. Its a hard crash to come back from. But, God is always there. I am being me in this un-me world.

What if we deverted 10% of the time we spend in make-believe to spending time with God? To telling others about Jesus the Way of Life? To being a witness for all God has done for you?

Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 15:9-11:

"For I am the least of the apostles and do not even deserve to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.  But by the grace of God I am who I am and his grace to me was not without effect.  No I worked harder than all of them--yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me."

The Holy Bible, New International Version.  1973, 1978 by International Bible Society.  The Zondervan Publishers

Let’s try being who we are in the grace of God. Maybe then we can make the changes in this world so needed if we can do a couple things. Be honest about who and what we are and taking care of our business instead of other peoples.

—-Donna

“…who is THAT woman?”

Husband and I at the 2019 Butterbean Festival with a Chick-fil-a cow.

Fifty-six is not a terribly high number. A lot closer to sixty than I want, but still, not bad. Right? My own mother passed away when she was fifty-four. Given my health issues and the number of times my husband and I have been told I probably would not make it through the night alive, fifty-six is a gift.

In December of “the year that shall not be spoken” our daughter got COVID-19 on her job as a health care worker. Then her father and I did too. Our daughter is 19, healthy and aside from feeling bad she recovered quickly. It hit my husband and I much harder. Between the two of us, I was the sicker one although none of us had to be in the hospital. (Sincerely, thank You Father!)

Finally “recovered” I looked in the mirror, down at my hands and my one foot left after the amputation and recoiled in disbelief. Who was this old woman staring at me with wide eyes and mouth agape?

Where had these gray hair come from? No kidding, they were not there three weeks ago. The flaky skin? The hands covered with hundreds of little wrinkles? After I inventoried every part of me I had to face the harsh truth, my body had a parade march across it and every thing left its mark.

I have never been a girly-girl but I enjoyed the times putting on the glitz and bling felt wonderful. Now, I am not kidding COVID-19 took ten years and added it to my face and hair.

Do I start wearing a wig again? Good option but they are hot in summer. Wigs provide “more hair”. My own thinned out in 2004 when I was incredibly sick (and the doctors kept promising it would grow back in) and COVID took more. So having more coverage is good.

Another option is hair color. It is an option that is going to require constant maintenance and it will not thicken my hair. Although I could go blue except for the bleaching of my hair which would damage it further.

This far I’ve been battling the flaky skin with exfoliating scrubs all over and tons of the best moisturizer and rehydration creams I can afford. Looks like a change in foundation (make-up) is also required. The one good thing about having to wear a mask when outside is that I do not have to line or use lip color on my lips surrounded by fine lines all of a sudden.

Yet, the saddest damage is to my heart. Just as quickly as COVID-19 invaded our household the feeling I am only a shell of the woman I was took residence in my mind and heart. This is going to sound even sillier than anything else I have shared but I am mourning things lost that have been gone for a decade or more. Like having a biological child. There is no need to imagine the look on the face of my face when the lab reports a positive pregnancy test anymore. Or the faces of my husband and daughter!

Passion seems to be a faded memory as well. Understanding those complicated relationships I always thought I would get later in life when I was “grown-up” does not seem to be happening either.

The good news is that aside from the health issues I knew about before today, my new doctor (my doctor of 20+ years retired when I had COVID) was pleased with how I am handling my health. Yes, I do have a few COVID “leftovers”. My left eye has a bit of black spot in the first half-hour/hour when I wake up. There is fluid build-up in my ears that causes me to hear things differently than they are said. (Or maybe my family needs to stop mumbling?)

My heart though still looks at myself and thinks, “Who is this woman with my mind, heart and soul but with all this gray hair, flaky and dry skin and fine wrinkles”?

Stick around and when I figure it out I will clue you in!

Suddenly old,

—-Donna

…lost Spaghetti?”

Yes, if you ask me, Spaghetti was lost.

The phone call came from a sobbing young woman, anxiety ridden because one of her beloved feline companions slipped off her leash and shot up onto a heavily wooded mountain side at a local park. Our daughter (the caller) was beyond upset and she and her boyfriend looked for Spaghetti for five hours. Five cold, damp hours. Spaghetti remained AWOL.

All of us posted social media notifications. We prayed Spaghetti would turn up. My Mama heart broke as I helplessly watched our daughter grieve. Spaghetti had been a stray whose tail had been cruely divorced from her body. She literally followed our daughter home after the maintenance man threatened to kill her. Given that our daughter’s other American Short Haired black cat (yes, two, they look like twins) was named Meatball, it was a natural thing to call Spaghetti, Spaghetti.

Spent considerable time praying Spaghetti would again find her way to our house or show up at the park. The park office had been alerted to the lost feline. Despite what naysayers will feel the need to interject, God had His perfect arrangements made in advance.

Early the next morning we learn the cat has been spotted, catching mice out by the pump house. Father and daughter go out to hopefully bring her home. Turned out it wasn’t too hard. Though Spaghetti hid a bit, Daddy called to her calmly and Daughter put a bit of food out and Spaghetti gave up on being a runaway.

Our daughter says she’s grounded forever. Ah…those parental over reactions get us all from time to time.

Meanwhile, I can’t resist this adaption of “On Top of Old Smokey”.

Topped by the Meatball, all covered with fur, I lost my poor Spaghetti who jumped to the floor. Right off the table and zoom out the door, there went Spaghetti streaking like nevermore…way before summer she returned for her mush*.

*Spaghetti couldn’t return expecting kittens, we had her “fixed”.

—Donna

…besides Jesus, what person from the Bible would you want to have coffee with?

Photo by Tatiana Syrikova on Pexels.com

Confession, this question came from a post on my church’s Facebook page. It immediately made me consider my own answer. After all, a one time opportunity to speak over coffee with one person from the Bible besides Jesus should take some consideration. Don’t you think?

Immediately I put all the major people in the Scriptures at the bottom of my list. Why? We know already, what people like Noah, King David, Ruth, Esther, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Peter, Paul, Timothy, Mary the mother of Jesus, Joseph (Jesus’ earthly father) think about their encounters with God, Jesus. There are several “minor” people we see in passing in the Bible that are ones I’d like to hear from myself.

My coffee invitation would go to Mary Magdalene. Mentioned twelve times in the four gospels of the New Testament, but with little background as to who she was. Lots of rumor, assumptions such as she was a prostitute. (There is no evidence of this accusation.) So, I’d like to know as much as I could about this woman of faith. Going to the source of the one who knows is usually the best place to start to understand the truth.

What questions would I ask her? Ordinarily I wouldn’t get terribly nosey about a person’s private life over a cup of coffee. I don’t want to bring up anything Mary Magdalene would be uncomfortable discussing. Yet, I also believe we’d both like to “set the record straight”.

Knowing already that the accusation she was a reformed prostitute has no evidence other than vaporous threads of people trying to explain her presence in Jesus’ life through a viewpoint of creating smoke to start a fire.

There is no evidence Mary Magdalene were married, that she was the Mary of Mary and Martha, Lazurus’ sisters either. Nor any evidence she and Jesus were married or lovers.

I would like to know, from a woman’s perspective, what Jesus was like as Himself in a day-to-day view. Despite the time in history when women had little legal standing in the community, were treated as property under the control of husbands, fathers, older male relatives or her male siblings Jesus did much to counter that culture.

Never before, in that Jewish culture, had a woman set at a man’s feet to be educated about God. Nor would a Jewish man speak to, much less ask help from, a Samaritian woman. Especially not who was obviously an outcast of her own community because of the time she came to draw water. Nor would a Jewish man tell a woman that her focus needed to be on God the Father, not on house keeping chores or even preparing for all the people gathering at their own home to see Him.

Yes, I’d like to know what Jesus was like interacting with the women in His life. not just in the precious few events recorded in the Bible. I believe I know. I believe I understand enough about Jesus, His character, His internal being that tells me I would not be disappointed in anything Mary Magdalene would tell me.

Jesus is the only person who has ever walked on this Earth who was perfect. He had to be flawless, pure, cleaner than clean inside in order to be the sacrifice to die upon the cross for our sins. The Old Testament speaks with no nonsense about how flawless an animal sacrifice for people’s sins had to be when they brought them as offerings to the temple. Imperfection would not do. So a flawed sacrifice is non-Biblical. Against God’s character.

Who was she? What is her testimony about how Jesus changed her life? Were her “demons” demonic spirits or mental illnesses? Jesus became the center of her life, why? I believe He still does and can do the same for us all today.

Mary Magdalene!  Welcome, won't you come in and have a cup of coffee?  Do you take cream or sugar?  I'm so excited to have some time with you.

Thanks for reading, I am also leaving some of my research on Mary Magdalene below.

—-Donna

Mary Magdalene,[a] sometimes called Mary of Magdala, or simply the Magdalene or the Madeleine, was a woman who, according to the four canonical gospels, traveled with Jesus as one of his followers and was a witness to his crucifixion and its aftermath.[2] She is mentioned by name twelve times in the canonical gospels, more than most of the apostles and more than any other woman in the Gospels, other than Jesus’ family. Mary’s epithet Magdalene may mean that she came from the town of Magdala, a fishing town on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee.

The Gospel of Luke 8:2–3 lists Mary Magdalene as one of the women who traveled with Jesus and helped support his ministry “out of their resources”, indicating that she was probably relatively wealthy. The same passage also states that seven demons had been driven out of her, a statement which is repeated in the longer ending of Mark. In all four canonical gospels, Mary Magdalene is a witness to the crucifixion of Jesus and, in the Synoptic Gospels, she is also present at his burial. All four gospels identify her, either alone or as a member of a larger group of women which includes Jesus’s mother, as the first to witness the empty tomb,[2] and the first to witness Jesus’s resurrection.[3]

For these reasons, Mary Magdalene is known in some Christian traditions as the “apostle to the apostles”. Mary Magdalene is a central figure in later Gnostic Christian writings, including the Dialogue of the Savior, the Pistis Sophia, the Gospel of Thomas, the Gospel of Philip, and the Gospel of Mary which many scholars attribute to Mary Magdalene. These texts portray Mary Magdalene as an apostle, as Jesus’s closest and most beloved disciple and the only one who truly understood his teachings. In the Gnostic texts, or Gnostic gospels, Mary Magdalene’s closeness to Jesus results in tension with another disciple, Peter, due to her gender and Peter’s jealousy of special teachings given to her. Scholars find claims Mary Magdalene was romantically involved with Jesus to be unsupported by evidence.

The portrayal of Mary Magdalene as a prostitute began after a series of Easter sermons delivered in 591, when Pope Gregory I conflated Mary Magdalene, who is introduced in Luke 8:2, with Mary of Bethany (Luke 10:39) and the unnamed “sinful woman” who anoints Jesus’s feet in Luke 7:36–50. This resulted in a widespread belief that she was a repentant prostitute or promiscuous woman.[4][2] Elaborate medieval legends from western Europe tell exaggerated tales of Mary Magdalene’s wealth and beauty, as well as her alleged journey to southern France. The identification of Mary Magdalene with Mary of Bethany and the unnamed “sinful woman” was a major controversy in the years leading up to the Reformation and some Protestant leaders rejected it. During the Counter-Reformation, the Catholic Church emphasized Mary Magdalene as a symbol of penance.

In 1969, the identification of Mary Magdalene with Mary of Bethany and the “sinful woman” was removed from the General Roman Calendar by Pope Paul VI, but the view of her as a former prostitute has persisted in popular culture. Mary Magdalene is considered to be a saint by the Catholic, and by the Eastern OrthodoxAnglican, and Lutheran churches. In 2016 Pope Francis raised the level of liturgical memory on July 22 from memorial to feast. Other Protestant churches honor her as a heroine of the faith. The Eastern Orthodox churches also commemorate her on the Sunday of the Myrrhbearers, the Orthodox equivalent of one of the Western Three Marys traditions.

Soon afterwards he (Jesus) went on through cities and villages, proclaiming and bringing the good news of the kingdom of God. The twelve were with him, as well as some women who had been cured of evil spirits and infirmities: Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out, and Joanna, the wife of Herod‘s steward Chuza, and Susanna, and many others, who provided for them out of their resources.— Luke 8:1–3

Mary Magdalene has the reputation in Western Christianity as being a repentant prostitute or loose woman; however, these claims are not supported by the canonical gospels, which at no point imply that she had ever been a prostitute or in any way notable for a sinful way of life.[2][158][159] The misconception likely arose due to a conflation between Mary Magdalene, Mary of Bethany (who anoints Jesus’s feet in John 11:1–12), and the unnamed “sinful woman” who anoints Jesus’s feet in Luke 7:36–50.[2][158][160][160] As early as the third century, the Church Father Tertullian (c. 160 – 225) references the touch of “the woman which was a sinner” in effort to prove that Jesus “was not a phantom, but really a solid body.”[155] This may indicate that Mary Magdalene was already being conflated with the “sinful woman” in Luke 7:36–50, though Tertullian never clearly identifies the woman of whom he speaks as Mary Magdalene.[155]

Wikipedia, last updated 11/1/2020 @ 18:37 (UTC). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Magdalene Their research is noted in their complete article.

…what happened to Fox News? (Part 2)

Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com
Continuation of yesterday's blog, "...what happened to Fox News? (Part 1)"

During the Summer of 2020 Murdoch and Trump had an argument.

Trump accused Murdoch of “encouraging” Fox to run negative reports about him. Though not supported by Ecarma’s* piece, it was, it appears, a decision made by Trump to question Murdoch’s support that lead to a negative consequence. It is not to far a step to see that if Murdoch used his influence to have news coverage that was positive towards Trump promoted he could use it to be stopped. Problem is, if this was true, it could just as easily backfire on Murdoch, Fox News as well as Trump.

Trump did allegedly confront Murdoch during the Summer of 2020 in anger. It’s incredible that so close to the November 3 election that Trump would do anything to risk Fox’s support, it makes little sense. But, to do so appears to fit with his personality.

Prior to the research done for this blog I witnessed several news coverages of press conferences. I noticed from what he himself revealed or people around him said, that Trump has many positive attributes.

One, he is a hard worker, survives on little sleep and expects the same dedication and work ethic from those around him.

Two, Trump is willing to make personal sacrifices for the United States of America. While there are those in our country and among the politicians of today who are calling for the wealthy to give up their wealth to assure someone else a boost up, (or level the start line for success for everyone) I never heard any of them willing to point out that Donald Trump was doing that already.

The man donates his salary as the President of the United States to various charities, keeping only the $1 required by law. Yes, it does mean he can get a tax credit for his charitable contributions but that is available to everyone who contributes to charities, non-profits, and churches for example. Of course, take that away from the wealthy and evidentualy it will mean it will be taken from us all.

Three, President Trump has kept his promise and hasn’t played “politics”. This, in my opinion, has as much to do with who Trump is as it does with how he’s been treated by Congress. He’s not been able to count on back-up even within the Republican party because he wasn’t playing the political game the way they’re accustomed to playing.

When his dedication, hard work and sacrifice goes unappreciated and unnoticed his feelings get hurt. When his feelings get hurt he does not do himself any favors by Tweeting or addressing the press. Some people find him rude, bossy, crude and worse. The picture they would paint of him, to me, is that of a bull in a china shop wearing a size 22 double pair of shoes. Although, it is that, I believe which attracts supporters of Trump to him. People are fed up with politics as usual. Whichever political party you support, you should be hearing that message by now.

It’s my opinion that Trump may not be the only person who, when they feel unappreciated, act in inappropriate ways. I believe Murdoch reacted to Trump’s words and accusations and did use his influence to pull Fox’s support.

The Murdoch’s are trying to explain their betrayal so they can save their money. Already it seems Fox is beginning to pay the cost of folding to Murdoch’s pressure. Conservatives, who made up the highest percentage of Fox viewers are pulling their viewership. Fox is in the same boat as all the other main stream media and the name of it is “Untrusted”.

This blogger repeats, Ecarma in his article in Vanity Fair HIVE, nor Maass in The Intercept made the same tie-in I did to that argument between Murdoch and Trump. We watched that coverage change right before our eyes. Not only did Fox begin to mock Trump and trash him they along with all the other main stream media they certainly do not act as if finding out the truth matters at all anymore.

Will the recount, investigations into any of the occurrences of suspected voter fraud change the result of the election? Maybe not enough for Trump to win but it will sure begin to restore the American people’s trust in our voting process and procedures. No relationship can sustain itself, grow in a healthy manner, resolve conflicts and thrive if the foundations of truth and honesty do not exist. No such foundation exists now.

Donna

11/11/2020

*Reference quoted in Part 1. “Is Rupert Murdoch Completely off the Trump Train?”, The Vanity Fair HIVE by Caleb Ecarma, 10/15/2020

…what happened to Fox News? (Part 1)

Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

Among the conservatives I know and whose comments are posted on social media, the one main stream media company trusted was Fox News. When allegedly Fox changed the overall tone of its coverage of President Donald Trump on the November 3 Election Night from supportive in nature to deliberately damaging, people noticed. People questioned. People felt betrayed. This writer included.

During researching what sparked this change in Fox the first search lead to who owned Fox. Rumor had it that Disney owned the media company. As with most answers you can find them if you follow the money and consequently, whose money it is.

The initial breadcrumb started at Century 21. Century 21 was owned by multiple people/corporations but the majority stockholder was the Murdock Family via trust with Rupert Murdoch having the most voting power. Plus, one quickly understands Fox is split into multiple pies. Fox News, Fox Sports, Fox Business, Fox Studios, groups of or individual Fox stations for example.

Disney came into the picture in June of 2018 when they were planning to acquire Fox for $71.3 billion for the film studio and TV assets. The buyout was put on hold when Fox shareholders sued and halted the acquisition process. In the acquired certain pies or pieces of pies but not the entire buffet of pies.

However, with a search into directly the Disney buyout status, this blogger discovered two things. One, the acquisition has now gone through. On March 20, 2019 Disney acquired Fox studio and TV assets. Two, Rupert Murdoch, and the Murdoch family retained control of the other Fox pies, whole and in pieces.

Rupert Murdoch was a personal friend of President Trump and financially contributed towards his 2016 and 2020 campaign. It appears the children of Murdoch did not support their father’s choices but he retained the voting block of their trust. Up until the night of the election Fox was the only main stream media that gave positive coverage to President Trump’s 2020 campaign. Then as their viewership watched, Fox turned on Trump like a piece of rotten seafood. Why?

A behind-the-scenes struggle that could determine the extent of post-election violence in America is breaking into the open, but it’s not at the White Housse of inside the GOP. It is within the billionaire Murdoch family, the owners of Fox News.”

“As Trump is Defeated, the Murdochs Try to Dodge Backlash for Fox News”, The Intercept on theintercept.com, November 6, 2020, written by Peter Maass.

This same article quoted Kathryn Murdoch’s tweet from Friday, November 6, 2020 that read, “I agree with this”. To what was she agreeing? Another Tweet by Jeremy Barr.

“CNN’s Jake Tapper, who says he doesn’t normally talk about competitors: “The Murdochs and the people at Fox have an obligation to put their country above their profits. It is very important that people make it very clear–that there is no credible evidence of widespread fraud.”

Tweeter posts by Kathryn Murdoch @KathrynMurdoch and Jeremy Barr @jeremymbarr. November 6, 2020

By Friday evening the Wall Street Journal’s editorial page skeptically noted that the Trump campaign would have to provide credible evidence of voter fraud. They, along with all the main stream media outlets were denying all evidence, even eyewitness reports and previous news coverage of dumped ballots, and still are despite proven fraud at the writing of this blog. Fox joined the trash Trump campaign calling for him to concede to Biden despite legal means in the works to continue to prove fraud in voting.

These are news outlets. When I went to journalism school we were taught to keep our personal bias out of the news coverage and to report the facts, discover the truth. What passes for journalism now is what was once referred to as yellow journalism and credited to such publications as the National Enquirer. According to this article Fox just suddenly had their eyes opened by the more up-to-date Murdoch’s and tried to save their professional reputations by turning.

I am not quite buying that argument. Why not? Because of another article on October 15, 2020 in the Vanity Fair HIVE online publication titled “Is Rupert Murdoch Completely off the Trump Train”, written by Caleb Ecarma. Normally I would not seek news coverage from Vanity Fair. However, this article brought out a nugget of information that could explain Fox’s drastic change to no longer being supportive of President Trump. An argument it was after all.

To be continued…

Donna

11/11/2020

A WordPress.com Website.

Up ↑