title explained

Onward and upward! something that you say in order to encourage someone to forget an unpleasant experience or failure and to think about the future instead and move forward.

My e-mail: jjmiller6213@comcast.net

Monday, March 28, 2016

Easter, Volleyball and Religion

Easter Sunday, I drove down to Karen's and had a late dinner (or early supper) with her and the grand kid and their significant others.  I remembered Easter Sundays in the past where we all went to church and then on to grandma's for an outdoor Easter egg hunt and dinner.  Dressed in our finery for the entire day.

I had to kind of smile as the grand kids arrived or came down from their bedrooms, dressed in their blue jeans and T-shirts.  

It was a lovely, warm, sunny day, near 70 degrees.  After eating, we went out to play volleyball.  I love volleyball!  Karen was a star on the high school team.  When I was in high school, we only played it in Phys. Ed class, but years later, I did play on an adult team.

Well, come to find out now--I am not very good.  I am still a terrific server, skimming the ball just over the net and scoring points, but I can no longer run around on the uneven ground.

Thankfully, by the time I realized I needed to get off the "court", so that Karen, Mark and the kids could play without me in the way, it was after six and time for me to start home anyway.

I had a lovely day.  Karen and I did get to sit by ourselves and gossip chat a bit about Jennifer's situation.  It seems that not only has her husband NOT started work as yet, he hasn't even met with his father to discuss it!!  So, Jennifer is still supporting the whole family, by commuting back and forth between New Jersey and her office here in Michigan.

Isn't that just lovely?

Why did they move from their home here in Michigan?  The reason given was so that Jen's husband would work for his father, eventually take over the multi-millionaire business and Jennifer would be home with her children and do some pro bono law work.

The real reason?  I don't know for sure, but have an idea it was because he quit his job, because he was told he had progressed in "level" and salary as high as possible and Jennifer could not support that big house that they had gotten in over their heads.

At least, when she isn't commuting here, she IS home with the kids----and the husband.

Please Lord, keep my mouth sealed as to the advice I so want to give her!!!!!!!!!
I am kind of sad today.  There was a TV program that I watched every Tuesday and Saturday evening.  It was re-runs of shows back in the 1990's by a nun called Mother Mary Angelica.  She founded a Catholic TV station called EWTN!  I loved watching her shows and always felt renewed.  She had suffered much in her life and often stated, when it became near her end of life, she would not go into hospice and "euthanized".  She wanted to be as awake as possible and wait for God to take her, not some drug.

Appropriately, she passed away, at age 92, on Easter Sunday.  Oh.  I loved her!
No, I'm not Catholic and even my Catholic children don't watch the show.

I remember, back in the '50's, my Mother watching a TV show with Bishop Fulton Sheen.  My Daddy thought Mother was nuts.  For some reason, even with her background of being brought up completely prejudiced against Catholics, she watched Bishop Sheen's TV show faithfully, every week.  She thought he made sense and came to realize that "Some Catholics are actually Christians.  He preaches from the Bible!"

I think my Mother would have felt the same way about Mother Angelica.  I dearly loved the no nonsense nun!  She'd scold the church leaders, the priests.  I'll bet she would scold the Pope they have now too.  She wanted nothing to do with the liberalization of the Catholic Church.  I feel the same way.

A lot of people are trying to liberalize my Methodist Church, and I don't like it a bit.

There is the Bible.  There is the doctrine, the discipline, the beliefs of each denomination.  Leave them alone!  If you are a leader in these denominations and want to change the Church doctrine to now say, Gay marriage, Gay pastors and abortion are all right, then go to another denomination that feels the same way.  

Quit messing with the discipline.  Join a more liberal church, where you will be much happier than causing upheaval in the church I grew up in.

In my opinion, the Church is trying to gain more members--perhaps younger members, so they are lowering the standards the Church has always had, to meet the society we now live in.  Why?

I don't believe in transubstantiation (where the bread and wine turn into the actual body and blood of Christ).  Therefore, I do not go to Catholic or Lutheran church.  If some of their members feel that same way now, then  they should leave go to a different denomination.

Now, and this is just my opinion, I don't want my religion to come down to my standards.  I want them to "hold my feet to the fire" or something like that.  Just like God does.

People like to say, "Well, Jesus wouldn't judge."  Are you kidding me?  Jesus is God.  God judges and so did Jesus.  Yes, he forgave, but he said, "Go and don't sin again."  He didn't say, "Okay, I forgive you, just go over there and say a prayer and you can go back to your sinful life."

What did God do to Sodom and Gomorrah?  Was that not a judgment?  

We want it to be comfortable.  Like the Mega church up the road from me.  It has a couple thousand membership.  Mostly younger people and young families.  You walk into the "sanctuary" or whatever they call it, dress in your blue jeans or shorts, with your flip flops on, bringing with you your coffee, or Pepsi or whatever you want to bring in with you.  I'm surprised there isn't a smoking room off to the side with the "sermon" piped in.

There isn't a Cross in the entire building!  There is no communion.  The "speaker" gets up in front and gives a talk--be loving and kind to people.  Don't judge anyone.  Be happy and we'll all go to Heaven.  I call it dessert preaching.

Well guess what?  Even the Bible tells us to judge the company we keep.  "Lie down with dogs, get up with fleas."  "Don't cast your pearls before swine."  We need to know the people we keep company with.  Are they edifying or do they drag us down into the pit?
Sorry--I guess I went off a bit.  What was my point.

Oh. I guess my thought was that Mother Mary Angelica didn't believe in liberalization religion and neither do I.


  1. I attend a small country Baptist church--about 30 families... and you'd fit right in with us! :)

    1. I also watch Dr. Charles Stanley every week. And Dr. David Jeremiah. "It doesn't matter what people think or feel, if it isn't in the Bible, it just isn't true."

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  3. I'm glad you had some quality time with your family on Easter. It is funny how much our Easter fashion sense has changed over the decades though.

    As for your religion and church observations---there are good people in all faiths and I see nothing wrong with watching a TV program featuring Catholics while you're Methodist. And about people wanting their church to change instead of just joining another...my thoughts are that the church standard on the morality regard being gay did/does need to change because we know more about the science behind what makes a person gay than we did in the days the Bible was written. For most it's not a choice but more of a birth defeat. The Church does grow over the centuries as we learn. Even the Bible has changed since its first translation. My gosh, if we put the Book of Eden and the other "lost chapters" back in the original translation Christians would still be stoning people who sin.

    1. Those books were Old Testament, Jewish Law books. Those of us who are Christians, followers of Christ, live more by the New Testament books. Jesus expanded on the Old Laws, which of course to the Jewish Law abiders, made him a liberal thinker. They were afraid He would break their beliefs, cause the Romans to destroy them. Thus, He was killed.

  4. I don't believe in religion at all. Period. It's man made and it's the cause of a lot of evil doing in the world today.

    1. I know many people who feel the same way, Nettie, and that's okay. I'm not here to convert anyone. Just expressing my experiences and a life-time of learning.

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    1. At least a few of us Traditionalists left, Eh? :-)

  6. i remember wearing pretty, fancy clothes on easter, some people still do that. my great nieces were dressed beautifully, they looked so cute. my niece still follows a lot of the traditions. here at the jersey shore, they have an easter parade on the boardwalk, it's primarily peeps dressed in their easter best!!!

    1. My youngest daughter and family have moved near Milford, NJ. Her MIL has a home on the Jersey Shore--but her year round house is in Bridgewater. I know nothing about NJ locations. Is Milford near Bridgewater? Is Milford near the shore?

  7. We are of the era where people "dressed" for the event. My 94 year old friend lamented about people wearing their pajamas on the airplane. He still put on a suit and tie!

    I was raised Catholic but am more agnostic now (got tired of the politics of the group) yet if I accompany someone to church, I dress up. Kinda hard to do in Maui but I do have 2-3 dressy pair of flip flops!

    1. Bless your 94 year old friend. I can remember when getting on an airplane was an event and we all dressed in our best. It has only been the last 3 years that I became a bit more comfortable wearing a pair of dress slacks to church. I have always worn a dress, slip, nylons, heels. :-) BTW--I listened to the Rosary being said tonight and I wondered, "Why do they repeat the same thing so many times? Doesn't the Blessed Mother/God/Jesus hear it the first time?" I will have to ask my daughter Karen that question.

  8. So glad you spent time with the family on Easter, Judy. Sounds like a really nice day. Good for you playing volleyball. :)

    I don't speak much on religion, but always glad to hear other people and their views. I've come to believe that church is wherever we need or want it to be. I don't attend anymore, but did for many, many years. My years as a youth minister were some of the happiest days, and Patti enjoyed being the mascot. :)

    1. Years ago I never would have even given a thought to missing church. And although I have nothing against the church down here or the pastor, I just seem to find more compelling teaching on different TBN shows that I watch on Saturday night and Sunday mornings. Plus--I am way to lazy to get up on Sunday mornings. I suppose that alone is the Devil acting in me?

  9. Whew! You have a strong moral compass. The way you talk about what bugs you, it sounds like self serving spirituality bugs you. Ever heard of the concept of spiritual bypassing? It's bypassing all the accountability and using spirituality to feel happy and good. It whitewashes 'all negative feelings and inner reckoning'. Hah! Too easy peasy. I believe in the kind of spirituality where we are asked to walk into our soul, face our pain and behaviors, evaluate them all with God to learn the truth, and then revise our behavior. I cannot believe love (God) is blindly compassionate and infinitely tolerant. But I believe love (God) isn't about dividing and conquering either, like some religions. Oh, so tricky to discuss religion LOL

    I remember back when our fanciest clothes came out at Easter. Hats, gloves and stockings. SO proper. Picture time. Can't say I miss those days!

  10. I agree, plus no one ever wants to acknowledge that the Devil/Satan is as strong as God is (right now) and at work in all areas of our society and our lives. He gets to me every now and then! The thing of it is, years ago I didn't recognize him, now I do, but sometimes--he still gets into my behavior!!!

  11. Neither do I. Preach it, sister. xoxo

  12. Judy, I'm so glad you wrote this post! I was raised Baptist, but now I just want to be called a Christian; I believe the gospel of grace revealed to the apostle Paul: that Christ died for my sins, was buried, and rose from the dead.

    I also enjoyed watching Mother Angelica and did not know she had died. There will probably be reruns of her show for years to come.

    I'm not attending church now, but have a Bible teacher on TV that I try to listen to daily and I've learned so much. Even though my daddy was a preacher, there are many things I never learned as a child.

    1. Mt Grandpa was a Preacher, but it was back in the days of my youth and a lot of hell and damnation taught then. I was scared of God for many years. His daughter, my Mother was not like that, she was all about Jesus love and forgiveness, but she did let me know that God was watching me and wanted me to be a "good girl". Paul? Isn't he the best teacher of all time? Thank Goodness he thought the Gentiles ought to know the truth too.