Lot was saved from Sodom–BEFORE he was saved from Sodom!

It’s January, and that means beginning “Reading through the Bible in a Year.” I recently joined a group who started in Job, instead of Genesis, because that’s okay, I’ve read Genesis 30 times. Or have I?

Did you ever have one of those moments while reading the Bible when a scripture seems to jump off the page at you, and you think, “I never noticed that before. How did that get in there?!” Well, that happened to me the other day while reading Genesis 14. (I’m not complaining, I love when that happens!)

So in Genesis 14, we start out with a war. I can’t pronounce most of these names but here we go:

King of Shinar, king of Ellasar, Kedorlaomer, the King of Elam and Tidal, King of Goiim  (Let’s call them Team 1)

vs.

King of Sodom, king of Gomorrah, king of Admah, king of Zeboiim, king of Bela (aka Zoar). (Let’s call them Team 2)

Team 1 conquers a bunch of territories. Then in verse 8, Team 2 goes up against Team 1 in the valley of Siddim, which was full of tar pits. When the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah fled, some of the men fell into the tar pits, and the rest fled to the hills. The four kings (Team 1) seized all the goods of Sodom and Gomorrah and all their food. Verse 12: They also carried off Abram’s nephew Lot and his possessions, since he was living in Sodom.

{A little backup here. Genesis 13:12-12 says: Abram lived in the land of Canaan, while Lot lived among the cities of the plain, and pitched his tents near Sodom. Now the men of Sodom were wicked and were sinning greatly against the Lord.

So it seems Lot liked living on the ‘borderline.’}

So Lot was taken away, and one who had escaped came and reported this to Abram. So Abram called out the 318 men who were trained and went out to get Lot back. He recovered all the goods and brought back his relative Lot and his possessions, and the men and women that were with him.

THEN– Abram meets up with Melchizedek, where the first recorded tithe is offered. But I never noticed that the King of Sodom was also there and watched the transaction.

Verse 17: After Abram returned from defeating Kedorlaomer and the kings with him, the king of Sodom came out to meet him in the Valley of Shaeveh. Then Melchizedek, king of Salem, brought out bread and wine. He was priest of God Most High, and he blessed Abram saying,

“Blessed be Abram by God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth. And blessed be God Most High who delivered your enemies into your hand.”

Then Abram gave him a tenth of everything.

The king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the people and keep the goods for yourself.”

Abram responds that he will accept nothing belonging to the king of Sodom, lest he would be able to say “I made Abram rich.”

Preachers like to pull out Genesis 14:18-20 when teaching the tithe, but to get a better picture, we need to include v 17 – 24.

Abram gave his tithe. This means he is trusting God to provide for him. Immediately, the king of Sodom tries to tempt him with goodies NOW. Hmm. Anyone ever have that happen? You’re waiting for an answer from God, but something else comes first, and you’re tempted to take it, because you don’t want to wait?  <raises hand.> Me. I’ve done it.

So back to Lot. Here he was living on the edge of the town of Sodom, and got mixed up in a war, and carried off as a prisoner of war. Uncle Abram had to go rescue him.  [Chapter 19 is the more famous story of Lot being saved from Sodom by angels.]

I wonder why Lot liked living in Sodom so much?

My post-cancer life

pink-ribbonWell now all the hoopla is over. I made it through the surgery, the breast reconstruction. The wounds have healed, the pain is gone. But the bombardment of letters, cards, gifts, and homemade meals are gone too. I do miss that; it must be what it’s like to be a beloved celebrity. All that attention. Sadly, I was doped up on painkillers through most of my recuperation, so I didn’t absorb the feelings as much as I wish I had.

Miraculously (I mean that literally!) I did not need chemo or radiation, and for that I am truly grateful.

Life mostly “goes back to normal.” I drag my butt out of bed, bow to the coffee machine, eat a bowl of oatmeal, kiss hubby good-bye on his way to work and remind him “no speeding.”

My very spoiled dog Bailey tries to plan my day according to what he would like to do: go for a walk, eat cheese, play outside, have a treat, lie on my good blanket and take a nap.

Thanks for joining me.

Thanks for joining me.

I pretend I’m doing housework (okay, I do some, but I’m not a Suzy Homemaker type.) I am still waiting for a self-cleaning house. I’m not yet back to work, so I can’t pay someone to clean my house like the ‘good ole days’. Coming home to a clean house is a luxury.

I do have one lingering problem. I am on these blasted estrogen-blocking pills. They make me TIRED and I know I never had TONS of energy, but now I have even less. Today I got enough energy to call the doctor’s office to make an appointment. My doctor is a sweetie, and she really believes in these medicines, because as she says, “it’s your life.” But if you’ve ever dragged yourself day after day due to no energy, it’s not much of a life. That’s where I’m living now. sleep-clipart-Sleeping

Today I’m thankful for the anger that rose up in me. The anger that is tired of being tired–it fueled me to make some phone calls to various doctors for other issues.

 

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I need to get my eyes checked and get new glasses. I need to call NutriBullet and tell them their stupid thing that we paid $100 doesn’t work anymore, so I can’t juice and feel fabulous. Ugh.

So, being as anger is the only thing that I feel at the moment, I am going to use it for good and not for evil.

Update: I’m on hold with NutriBullet people……

 

 

 

The Music Man and the 39-cent Bar of Soap

bar_of_soapMy music teacher, Mr. Sullivan, was a fat, bald man. Whatever hair he did have was an unattractive dull rusty color. Strangely enough, his wife, who was a substitute teacher, was a cute young thing with pretty blonde hair and a good figure. I always wondered how he managed that one.

In fifth grade, we sang songs like “Old Kentucky Home” “Home on the Range” (Oh give me a home where the buffalo roam), “Yankee Doodle” and other  traditional American favorites.

I attended a mostly white school in the suburbs; you could count the black students on one hand. Halfway through the year we got a new student, a black kid named Gary. The boys accepted him as another guy to play with, run races around the track, and play cars on the floor with.

One day while we were in music class, Mr. Sullivan told us, “I don’t have any prejudice against people who have different color skin. But what I do have prejudice against is people who don’t wash. Soap is 39 cents. Everybody can afford that.”

I digested his words for a few minutes, and realized, yes, that makes total sense. I noticed that Gary did have a distinctive smell; he smelled different from the other boys. Except Charles of course. Charles always smelled awful. (Charles was a poor kid, rumored to have been the product of his father and his sister.)

I figured Mr. Sullivan had a good reason, and that he didn’t like Gary because he smelled funny and his explanation made perfect sense. It wasn’t because Gary was black, it was because he smelled funny.

About a month later, I went home after school, hitting the cabinet for the Oreo cookies before starting my homework. As I opened the cabinet, Mother told me, “We are using paper plates for supper tonight. The well has run dry and we don’t have any water.”

“What about the toilet?” My first thought popped out of my mouth.

“I was able to fill a few jugs with water from the neighbors across the street, but we can’t flush every time. Don’t use so much toilet paper.” (Mother had always tried to explain about only using 2 squares, and I never did figure out how that was enough to dry yourself with.)

I ate my cookies, and out of habit went to the kitchen sink to wash away the crumbs from my hands. I turned on the faucet and nothing came out. Then it hit me: it’s not about the soap, it’s about the plumbing. If a pipe breaks or there is no water, you can’t wash. It has nothing to do with 39 cent soap.  It’s about the plumbing, and poor people can’t always fix their plumbing immediately.

I realized that people can make excuses for just about anything. They can lie to themselves to make themselves feel better, without addressing the real issue.

Were you told stories like the 39-cent soap by your parents and teachers?

 

 

 

 

Hungry for rejection?

There is a feature in a magazine called “Reject A Hit”. It is a parody of what an editor might have written when rejecting a book that turned out to be a huge success.  While the magazine seems to like printing submissions that reject classics, such as anything written by Charles Dickens, the dictionary (several times), anything by Ernest Hemingway, (you get the idea) I submitted a phony rejection of Hunger Games.

Since the editors did not see fit to publish my submission, my writer friend Anna @AnnaCBowling suggested that I share it with you, my dear readers.

So here it is:

 

January 2, 2003
Dear Ms. Collins:
Amid much confusion, I must reject your manuscript The Hunger Games.  When I first received your submission, I was expecting to find a story of young children playfully enjoying board games as they munched their peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. But that is not what I found.
I dare say that you yourself must have been quite hungry while writing this work. This becomes obvious as you introduce a character whose family owns a bakery. You even name him Pita, and although you misspelled it “Peeta”, you surely had food on your mind. He purposely burns a loaf of bread and throws it to your protagonist. Can’t you just smell the bread baking?
 I then noticed that you brought in another character, an Effie Trinket, who is a celebrity merely because she is a celebrity. Just imagine if television programs were based on such people. What if magazines decided to print stories about such people?
Children are then “reaped” (more thoughts of food?) for war games to entertain the privileged elite, while the elite live in luxury. What kind of world would it be if this were so?
I have heard rumors that there will be two more books in this series. My advice is to have a sandwich before writing them.
Regards,
SueAnn Porter

 

#HungerGames

#rejection

#amwriting

 

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Happy New Year to you all!!

Do I look comfy to you? Year End Edition, 2014

Bailey_3

Hi, Bailey here filling in for Mom again. Mom decided I should go through my pictures and post my funny positions I have gotten into through the course of the year. Believe it or not, my picture above is a position that I get into very often. It’s very comfy!

This is what I do when my nose is cold, I roll up into a little ball. Notice how I can bend my front leg:

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Sometimes I like to become invisible and hide behind the curtain:

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But Mom still finds me. I don’t know how she does it:

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Mom still laughs every time she sees this one. I was very comfortable, by the way.

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Here’s the side view:

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Here’s the one Mom took when I came home from being in the kennel for a week. Those other dogs sure made a lot of noise! I tucked my head under the couch. I just wanted some peace and quiet:

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Mom likes to put the antlers on me for the Holidays. But this is not comfy at all:

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I had to hide myself for the sheer embarrassment of it all. I’m glad no one can see me hiding behind this curtain:

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Mom took this pic when Dad first got his new job. He had to leave the house everyday, and I was so bored:

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You have to be really talented to do this. I can sleep with my nose 1/4 inch above the floor. Yes, it’s very comfy:

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In fact, I was sleeping like this just yesterday, until Mom woke me up. Yes, in this exact position:

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This position Mom calls, “Crouching Bailey, Hidden Dragon.” It looks like I’m going to jump up any second. But I only jump up if they say the magic word, “cheese”.

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Mom taught me to do this if I want a treat. Sometimes she teases me and says “Raise your hand if you’re spoiled.” I do it anyway, because she still gives me a treat.

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Here I am chillaxing at the edge of my bed. This is comfy too:

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Sometimes I try to roll myself into a little ball. It looks more difficult than it is. Mom sometimes calls this “the pretzel” because my legs are all intertwined. But it’s comfy:

 

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This is the face I make when Mom is cooking again:

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Well that’s it for now. I’m sure Mom will keep taking pictures of me as I try new positions.