Tuesday, June 1, 2010

*More* Simple Pleasures...

Fitty and Stu grazing in the yard...


Laundry drying on the line...

The *girls*, relaxing, in the shade of a tree, in the yard...

Washing dishes, by hand, in warm sudsy water, with the scent of Mrs. Meyer's geranium dish soap in the air...

Enjoying a simple, clean living room...spending time knitting in my chair...

A corner of my dining room, easy on the eyes...

Doing some summer learning with Xavier...


...and figuring with Madelyn...

...so many simple pleasures in our lives...sometimes easily over-looked, but definitely there. Do you see them? Do you enjoy them?

From my heart to yours....

I assume that most of you, who read my blog, have respect for me. :) Thank you for that. I ask you now, if you don't already, to try something. For one week...watch the Glenn Beck program on Fox News at 5pm EST. He is teaching *real* American history...that we haven't heard before. Our country is being torn apart...and we need to be armed with truth.

I challenge you, no matter what your views, to watch the program for ONE week and then come back and either comment...or email me your thoughts. I would love to discuss it with you. He has a love for others and for our country...as well as for the truth. If you can't watch at that time...you can see shows HERE.

Although I rest in the peace provided by our Creator and continually give my worries to Him...I *do* have a concern about the direction of our country and what is going on. If you aren't aware of what is going on...you need to be...not only for yourself...but for your children and grandchildren as well.

I am not coming to you with a spirit of fear...but rather with a desire to spread truth. Many believe everything will always just be *ok*...but we are called to have wisdom and if we are honest...we know that this is a fallen world that *can* fail. Please join me in praying for our country as well as seeking out and spreading the truth! :o)

18 comments:

  1. I love your pictures of simplicity! I think it's so important that we remember the simple things in life:) Tamara

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  2. Katy...I love to see your country life-the one I hope to lead one day. And yet, isn't a good part of it in our heart, regardless of whether we{I} live in suburbia or not?!?! Hmmm...maybe I need to get me some more Mrs. Meyers Geranium-its such a summery, happy fragrance!!
    Hope you have a great week!!
    Elise

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  3. I watch Glenn Beck on occasion even though I don't watch much tv, and he speaks the truth, no holds barred, and I too am VERY worried about the state this country is in, I pray about it alot! I get the Mrs. meyer's dish soap from drugstore.com and the smells are wonderful:)

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  4. The simple pleasures are the best!

    I too am concerned about our country, Katy. We don't have cable, but we listen to Glenn Beck on AFR. We have been praying earnestly over the condition of our country and that God keeps his hand on America and the eyes of the American people will be opened and people will stand.

    Thanks for sharing your heart!
    Tammy

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  5. Love Glenn Beck, love the simple things and love your blog!!!

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  6. Love your simple pleasures photos!

    Manuela

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  7. love your cozy home..
    i never heard of glenn, will have to remember to watch him..
    have a lovely wednesday..

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  8. Your blog always seems to have such a feeling of peace and tranquility and I bet your home is the same. Blessings

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  9. I accept your challenge. And I too challenge you. For the same week that you watch Glenn Beck, also watch Jon Stewart - Comedy Central, 11pm or the following day at various times. Or online.

    It is wonderful to pray for the country. It is wonderful to care about the direction of the country. It is wonderful to be concerned with TRUTH. There is nothing wrong with opposing practices that clash with principled values you hold. But I challenge people to follow up and find out what is true after reading or watching or hearing ANYTHING. Don't just accept that one side must be telling the truth (simply because this side tells you they are telling you the truth) - even if you already agree with that side. Use many sources. Check facts. Yes, media can be biased in either direction. It does no one any good to be deceived in either direction. But listen to both sides. Check your sources - are they profiting by leading you to believe something (e.g., is someone who has a lot of influence and makes a lot of money when people invest in gold telling you that it is a good idea to invest in gold?)? What are they actually saying? Are they using deceptive words to get you to believe something without directly saying it? You realize if someone just implies things that aren't true rather than directly saying things that aren't true, they can avoid a lot of legal problems, right? Then check their facts. Truly try to hear both sides. Keep an open mind. Pray for wisdom - wisdom to see what is real and true, regardless of what anyone is motivated to have you believe. And regardless of what you might already want to believe. Then make the best decisions you can. That is my challenge.

    A side challenge: try paying attention to the kinds of commercials that are shown during the different programs. How are the advertisers trying to get you to buy stuff? Are they trying to scare you into believing something? Are they trying to get you to laugh? Are they trying to make you think you need something in order to feel better about yourself? What products do they think you
    "need"? You see, advertisers spend a lot of time thinking about their audiences - they are motivated to manipulate you. if you pay attention to the commercials, you will find out the kind of person the advertisers think you are based on the kind of shows you watch. The advertisers profile you to find out how they can manipulate you. If you think critically about what you are being handed, then the power is in your hands. Then you can make good, thoughtful, rational decisions. Then you claim your mind for your own.

    1 John 4:1
    Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world

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  10. 2 Pet 2:1 [NIV] But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them--bringing swift destruction on themselves.

    2 Pet 2:2 [NIV] Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute.
    2 Pet 2:3 [NIV] In their greed these teachers will exploit you with stories they have made up. Their condemnation has long been hanging over them, and their destruction has not been sleeping.

    2 Tim 4:2 [NIV] Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction.
    2 Tim 4:3 For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.
    2 Tim 4:4 They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.

    Mat 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
    Mat 7:16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
    Mat 7:17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
    Mat 7:18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
    Mat 7:19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
    Mat 7:20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.

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  11. Anon~

    I do look at different angles. :) I appreciate your words. I am not scared...I trust that God has me in the palm of His hand. My husband and I are debt free and have absolutely *no* plans of getting gold. (So the commercials have no affect on me whatsoever....usually I go *do* something during commercials anyway!)

    I don't live in fear...I see how history is repeating itself. Glenn Beck does not bring fear upon me....rather truth....he has checked his history. He has recommended loads of books on the *true* history of America...books I now have in my possession.
    I do not think Glenn Beck is perfect...nor do I agree with some of the doctrine he believes in. However, I *do* believe he comes with a humble and sincere heart....seeking to show the truth.

    I don't watch anything on Comedy Central....I think the channel is only full of trash. I do agree that we must be discerning and careful of what we seek out but listening to someone who has absolutely no love for others is of no benefit to me.

    The thing I like about Glenn Beck is that he shows videos of the people's *own* words and actually continually tells his listeners to Go and Search these facts out. He doesn't just hand out his opinion. He backs it up and shows *how* he gets his info.

    The quotes of scripture are exactly what I would pick out for anyone who believes the words of our current president or the people surrounding him! Be careful! I am already a discerning woman...who asks for wisdom, for the Wisdom-Giver and receives it when He knows I need it.


    Thank you for taking the time to visit and share your thoughts with me...I *do* appreciate it. I get the sense that you don't share the same views as me, which is fine. Each is entitled to their own views. Thank you for stopping by. :)

    I honestly, though, never understand why anyone leaves a comment as anon.? Oh well! :) Enjoy your week!

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  12. I didn't mean to unnerve you by posting anonymously. But please try to have a bit of empathy. Perhaps someone might post as anonymous if they live in a very, very small town and most people in the town love Glenn Beck and believe most everything he told them, and if many people in the town behaved badly toward people who disagreed with them (e.g.,bullying, misrepresenting them, or gossiping about them in small town circles or at church). There are reasons someone might post this way. I apologize if it came across as attacking in any way to post anonymously, but it was a self-protective reason, not an aggressive one. Perhaps if you were the minority and were surrounded by people who behaved in these ways toward a minority, it would be easier to understand.
    You could probably change the settings so people can't post anonymously, though.

    I apologize if I offended you. I did try to write in a diplomatic way. It looks like maybe I made you feel defensive? That was not my intent - my intent was just to suggest taking in information from more than one source and actually trying to find information to determine whether it is true or not (it is great if Mr. Beck is telling people to find out for themselves - assuming people do actually seek information from reliable sources and are at least aware of what the other argument is (not an overly edited, misrepresented version of the other argument - but a TRULY "fair and balanced" presentation of the argument and one that is made in the absence of ridicule) - political issues are heated because they are complex. If everything were straightforward, I doubt everyone would disagree so passionately about them. No one has to agree with any particular perspective - if it is in fact truth that someone is receiving, then truly understanding opposing views would only make someone's beliefs all the more convincing. the beliefs would stand up to challenge and be stronger. It should not be so threatening to hear an alternative argument that the person who makes it has to be attacked (not a criticism of you - this is a criticism of the show).

    I did not mention the president, and I am not going to argue against or defend him, his associates, or any decisions. Whether the president is being truthful about any particular issue or issues has no bearing whatsoever on whether the information that Mr. Beck is presenting is true. I believe it is important and valuable to hear both stories, regardless of which person is "truly" the wolf in sheep's clothing (if either is, if both are, or if neither is). If we were to find out that one person were a false prophet, that doesn't mean that the other person isn't. Nor does finding out that one is not a false prophet mean that the other one is. The issue is the evidence. The evidence provides clues about what is true. That is my concern.

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  13. My concern is not so much that anyone believe exactly what I do (because I realize that we are all limited even when we have the best intentions). But watching Mr. Beck's show does make me concerned with HOW he is presenting what he is so sure is "true." I am not saying that there is or isn't truth in what he says. Right now, I'm not saying someone else is necessarily better or more truthful or more correct. That may or may not be the case. I guess my concern is that rather than providing logical reasons for believing things, Fox News often just attacks and ridicules people who disagree with them. Rather than presenting opposing views in a "fair and balanced" way, they create straw men. I am not sure that is a very Christian strategy. I don't think a Christian has to ridicule opposition in order to support what they believe. I believe truth stands on its own and is not threatened by and does not misrepresent disagreement. They also employ a lot of insinuation, which I personally find to be a very deceptive and dishonest strategy. I suggested watching Jon Stewart because often Jon Stewart (or Colbert) will respond to Mr. Beck's programming, and point out exactly where Mr. Beck has twisted the truth.

    Imagine for just a minute that someone else (let's say Jon Stewart) really truly in his heart believed that Glenn Beck was deliberately inspiring fear in his viewers for no other reason than to make a lot of money from his show and selling books, etc. Imagine that Jon Stewart truly believed that Glenn Beck was deliberately twisting information to manipulate people and that he exploited their emotions for profit. Couldn't Jon decide to expose untruth out of concern or love? If I knew (or strongly believed) that someone was hurting or manipulating less powerful others for their own personal gain, I would consider it my duty to speak up or do something. It may or may not be the case that Jon is motivated by a righteous motive. It may or may not be the case that Glenn Beck is motivated by a righteous reason. I guess I am just really surprised that you are so quick to judge the hearts of others ("but listening to someone who has absolutely no love for others is of no benefit to me"). You don't have to agree with someone else's views, but the fact that they are different than yours does not mean that they have no love for others. They just have a different perspective, and if you take their perspective into account, maybe their behavior would look a little different and make more sense than it does if you assume that your perspective is absolutely true. If you take into account the perspectives of others and the possibility that even if they see things differently than you do, they can still be motivated to behave righteously, then I suspect there would be less of an us versus them kind of a mentality.

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  14. I guess it is kind of ironic because I was willing to accept your challenge and I did try to do it respectfully - I accepted your challenge without disparaging anyone. I did not say that I don't watch Fox News because it is a lot of trash, and it is of no benefit to me to watch shows that deliberately mislead less educated, rural Christians. There is a benefit to understanding the point of view of those who disagree, and I recognize that. I guess I valued the prospect of dialogue enough to put aside my distaste for the program and engage in conversation. Because I believed there was value in understanding someone else's view before criticizing or discounting it. Instead of just saying that it is okay that we agree because that is the "right" thing to say, I was giving you enough respect to listen to you and consider why you had the perspective you did and take a fresh look at something that you value. I was willing to watch a show that I personally find morally reprehensible (because of the strategies that are used to manipulate people into believing things - I am not concerned with any particular belief anyone might have. I personally believe that God alone is infallible and God alone knows what is True. I believe that the rest of us are flawed and we are just called to be discerning and do the best with what we have - and I believe you and I are both doing that to the best of our current abilities). I also take very seriously the biblical warning to take on teaching roles with humility because there is a stricter standard for people who adopt those roles. I could very easily find lots of reasons to support the conclusion that Glenn Beck does not have love for others (but I am really not the one to judge that - that is not my place). But that would have no bearing on whether what Glenn Beck says is true or not. And that would have no bearing on the reasons that you have for the beliefs that you have - and I believe that it is important to hear you or anyone when they are trying to communicate something important to them, even if I disagree. If I were to dismiss your beliefs because they come from someone who I don't believe has love for anyone else, I do not think I would be treating you respectfully.

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  15. I guess my concern is that the information may or may not be true. But the truth is true, regardless of whether someone who loves others says it or someone who is mostly selfish says it. Do you truly believe that the image of God is only in certain people? I agree that we are all sinners and flawed, but it is such a strong statement to make about someone and is such a big thing to do to just write people off just because you have decided they have no love. I believe that everyone, even my "enemies," are created in God's image. Even if you had reasons to believe Jon Stewart does not love anyone (and I am not really sure what your reasons were for saying that), it is a very strong judgment. Attacking a person has nothing to do with whether the information really is true or not. That is why my point was to get information from the people who disagree too - not just from the person you agree with and what he (or like-minded people he promotes - and people who he profits from) tell you his opponents say. I believe that Glenn is acting as though what he shows you is objective, but having watched from many different angles, I would argue that his behavior is extremely deceptive. It often departs from information gathered from many, many different sources from different networks and different countries. Taking words out of context is not an honest and straightforward approach. Even if I were to stop for a minute and suppose that it were true that Glenn Beck believed everything he said and genuinely cared for the country, how could he possibly know for sure what is True? I guess I personally am not willing to take someone else's word for having done the research and let them make conclusions for me - I think it really is important to check facts for oneself rather than just believe someone who tells me that they already did it, that they are not mistaken (or are not profiting by misleading me). If you want someone to believe you unquestioningly, it seems like it would be a great strategy to act like you have nothing to hide - because then people won't actually follow up on it. It is an even better strategy when you consider the extents to which he goes to attack and discredit all other sources of information. It is a bullying approach and it makes people feel like they are all on the same team, that it is us versus them, and that one's own team is the only true and right team and the other side is evil. It is a strategy that causes division and animosity. It is not a strategy that fosters respect and what I would consider to be ethical behavior. And even beyond that, it is a strategy that ensures that if your viewers ever do hear information that disconfirms what you told them to believe, they won't listen to it because you already convinced them that no one else is objective or honest.

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  16. I am not arguing that anyone is perfect or gives perfectly true information - I am arguing the opposite. I am not arguing that anyone does or does not love others - I am in no place to judge that. I am not arguing that any beliefs are "wrong." I am not even necessarily disagreeing with any specific beliefs that you have. My point is that the strategies that the show uses are unacceptable (and the network - when the people that Glenn Beck misrepresents complain or when the show is criticized for misleading the public, the network admits that this and many other shows are merely intended to provide entertainment and are NOT intended to be news. If I were going to market and make inordinate amounts of money from a show that is nothing more than strongly worded opinions and bits and pieces of truth and misrepresentations of facts and people, I would also be very careful not to explicitly call the show a news show. If you say you are presenting news, then you inherit the obligation to actually present things in a less misleading way. If you call it opinion or editorial, no matter how much you try to make it look like news and make people believe they are watching news, the area is gray and you are less liable. I believe the show uses tactics that get people to believe without truly questioning and evaluating what they believe, that the show uses tactics of attacking people who disagree rather than engaging in rational, respectful dialogue, and that the show appeals primarily to emotion - it arouses strong emotions in people and exploits their emotion (whether it is fear, anger, whatever - there are actually studies about this). I do not believe the show is an acceptable example of how to love others and I believe it glorifies unwarranted arrogance, which I do not consider to be a virtue. I do believe that the practices of the show violate a laundry list of biblical mandates.

    Despite all of this, I was willing to watch it with an open mind because I believed from your post that you were interested in thoughtful dialogue. From your subsequent post, I see many of Glenn Beck's own words just repeated (which is another problem that I have with the network - continually repeating the same phrases over and over until avid watchers are repeating them too - it discourages people from actually processing the information because it subconsciously indoctrinates them into believing it just from hearing it so often).

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  17. Regardless, we seem to share Christian beliefs, whatever political differences we might (or might not) have - or regardless of what differences in television watching preferences we might have. In the end, the faith is more important anyway. I think we are only expected to make truly good faith efforts, and that God will search our hearts. I do believe your heart is good and caring and you are seeking righteousness. I hope that you understand that this is my goal too - we are just at very different places. I do hope that I have not offended you. It was important to me that I speak up when I perceived something to violate ethical beliefs that I take very seriously. I am not talking about you. I am not meaning to say anything bad about you. I am referring to the show and the network and how they profit from exploiting less educated viewers. I believe it is important to take care of the poor, the widow, the orphan - in this case, I think that means looking out for the less fortunate and speaking against practices that exploit people with less education or for other socioeconomic reasons. Again, it is not any particular belief - it is the way that people are convinced of their beliefs that I have an issue with. I understand that you were most likely speaking up because it is an issue that is very important to you too, and you want to do what is right. I respect that. I believe your intentions are good. I hope you understand that mine are too - I felt compelled to write what I believe to be true, just as I am sure you did. Maybe one of us will change their minds some day, maybe not. But I do believe we are both seeking truth, and maybe we are just getting different glimpses of it right now. Some day I am sure the whole picture will come together and things will be clear.

    God bless.

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  18. Anon~

    I apologize if my last comment to you sounded at all mean or defensive. That was truly not my intent. I am thankful for the discussion and to hear your views. Although hard to detect via typing on the computer, I wrote with a kind heart and didn't mean to sound rude.

    I thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts and views with me. I respect your thoughts and appreciate that you have respect for mine, as well.

    Quickly, I just want to say that I truly believe Glenn Beck has the best intentions for our country. He often says "Prepare for the worst, hope for the best" and has, quite often, been right about many things. I don't believe he would put the lives of his family and himself at such a high risk just to promote advertisements (ie:goldline etc).

    I don't always agree how he makes fun of things, etc...but overall...he speaks truth, as best as he can. I trust that and am thankful for it. When he puts things on TV, he is putting it out there for anyone to refute. I think he tries to really get his information correct! :)

    Again, I speak in gentle kindness and not harshly. I appreciate you taking the time to write. I don't agree with you...but I do see we both have the best intentions at heart.

    My best to you! Have a good day!

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I am always so grateful to read your comments! I thank you for the time you took to visit and share your thoughts with me. :o)
May you enter as a stranger and leave as a friend!
Warmly, Katy