Enemy Controlled Territory aka Your Local Church

Remember that password protected post that I accidentally sent out? That started out as a normal blog post, thusly:

I woke up ten minutes before my alarm went off this morning. I got my Bible reading and prayers done, made breakfast, took the trash, took Get Along Husband to work, did the grocery shopping, and still made it home by 9 a.m. to start lessons with the kids. We did a great job, then I spent an hour working out before our late lunch. In short, I did the sort of things I always do, and that every homeschooling mom finds herself doing routinely. Nothing special, right?

But man, I felt GOOD. All morning long, I felt good. And I started wondering, why do I feel so good right now? And why haven’t I felt this way in such a long time? My habits haven’t changed. My motivations and dedication to duty haven’t changed. My willingness to do the work hasn’t changed. I’ve been basically getting it done all along. It’s just better right now.

I haven’t been so focused and just plain happy to be getting things done in a very long time.

“Why do I feel so good?” I wondered, all morning long. And I think I have it figured out, after looking back on my day yesterday, then the weeks before that, and the eighteen months before those weeks. You want to know what the secret sauce is to being totally into life, and able to face it joyfully? One word:

Fellowship.

Yesterday, I got to worship with God’s people, my people, my tribe. I got to teach Sunday School (although our church is so much cooler than that, so it’s not called Sunday School here, but another name that means the same thing).

I got to see a bunch of sweet little faces, tell them about Jesus, and give a hug to a little guy who was having a tough moment. Then I got to lift my scratchy voice in praise to the One who redeemed me. I heard the Gospel preached by a pastor who loves the Lord and loves His flock with a sincere heart, and brings good Doctrine to sustain them.

Then I had an elder pray with me over a difficulty that I’ve been dealing with for 13 long years, with a hand on my shoulder and a heart that understood my need without being told very much about it. That kind of prayer can only come through the Holy Spirit praying for us, and with us, and through us.

I didn’t get much rest yesterday, though it was a Sunday, because I brought eight hungry kids home with me. I still had a couple more (laid back) meals to crank out, and the little ones still needed a lot of attention. A busy “day of rest” with all that social activity, for someone who is happiest locked in a quiet room with a book surely can’t account for how well-rested I feel today.

The only thing that can account for this long-absent sense of wholeness and wellness is the fellowship. This burst of happy energy was a pretty regular Monday occurrence for me, once upon a time. Before things went off the rails, my week would always start at the top like that, and then take a downward slide as the weekend approached. Then there would be a recharge on Sunday, and we’re off to the races again! (And let me put in a good word for Wednesday night prayer meetings here.)

“When Covid happened”, as people like to say, my good attitude started slipping. I didn’t really even notice it at first, because my lifestyle stayed basically the same. Our family weathered the storm of the tyrannical lockdowns much more easily than most probably did, simply because we’re stay-at-home people anyway. We’re a big family, so loneliness is easier to overcome, or at least to not notice. But over time, it started to wear on us, too. When church opened back up, but with masks, it wore on us even more. Because we knew the masks were a tool of political control, not of a virus, but of the population itself, our consciences wouldn’t allow us to wear them, so we were even more alienated than those who wore them.

Even inside church, because others were masked and social distancing, we were apart, as if a new sacrament, one of masks and hand-sanitizing, had been introduced to mark the True Christians. We were told that this is how we “honor our weak” and “show we care”, but to our family, it sounded like–because it was–gaslighting. It was second-hand gaslighting, to be sure, spoken by people who had been gas-lit themselves into thinking they were bad for questioning whether it was right, or even sane, to cover their faces and refuse to touch other people.

We couldn’t see faces, or hug friends, or even shake hands. Conversation was awkward, especially in a large church where we don’t recognize people quickly in a crowd just by the top third of their faces. I literally ran out the doors after most services, it was so unfriendly a place. Worship itself was sincere, I believe, but strangled. I know I’m not the only one who emotionally couldn’t handle the physical and emotional distancing. We skipped a lot of Sunday mornings because it was too hard to watch.

We couldn’t really hear the voices of those trying to sing with muzzles on. We had to pray without touching each other, or even getting closer than shouting distance. We had to feel awkward about violating the 6-foot distance to speak to friends. Every meal at home became a mechanical event, just feeding a body, because we’d had no meals with the Church to remind us that we are more than the body. The sterile communion cup packages felt–well, sterile, obviously. I wonder if it’s even truly communion like that. God forgive us!

One of the most painful memories I have of this faceless time was when we were sitting two taped-off rows behind a family with a little guy, maybe a year and a half old, and the sweet fellow couldn’t take his eyes off my face. It would be nice to think that he was staring so much because he’d never seen anybody so pretty, but my mirror tells a different story, so I can’t comfort myself with that explanation. My daughter noticed it, too, and asked me later why he was so interested in my face. “I think,” I said, “that it’s because mine is the only adult face he’s seen without a mask since he was too little to remember. He doesn’t know what to make of grownup strangers’ faces.” It’s a scary thought for our society’s future when you consider all the babies who went through that crucial phase of development without adequate exposure to community faces.

We lost a year of learning each other. Our children lost a year of development (there are reports that IQ in the very young has declined drastically), a year of community, a year of Sunday School, a year of friendship and learning who and how to trust. Those years can never be reclaimed. While I did my best to make sure my kids still had human contact, our church connection was first non-existent, then horrifically alienating as things “opened back up”.

My soul started to dry out. That was the worst thing, but my body started to feel the changes, too. I had more allergies and minor malaises–the kind you can’t really pin down, but you just don’t feel good–during this “safe at home” time than I did in the twenty years preceding it combined. My children were often just not quite right, as well. It was a physical depression due to isolation. I was frequently discouraged with my diet and exercise, feeling like I just wasn’t worth the effort, though by force of will I stuck to it anyway. I’ve been quite healthy by any objective measure, but like every other human being, I need more than a mirror and a thermometer to tell me I’m doing ok. Introvert that I am, I’ve discovered that I really do need people to show me myself. That’s a good thing to know, so I guess God can pull something good out of just any situation.

Touching, smelling, swapping pheromones, producing oxytocin and all those other hormones we have during face-to-face interactions, catching colds that educate our immune systems (in fact, they educate our immune systems to handle covid!): we need all of that germy, messy human contact. Because I was aware of these needs, I did everything in my power to keep my family in contact with others, and not just by Zoom meetings.

But the Church is the contact we need most. We didn’t just need to hang out with friends and family, which we managed to do often enough that I think we weathered this storm pretty well. We couldn’t get the same spiritual and physical boost from “worship” in front of the teevee. The Holy Spirit works uniquely through our physical meetings.

We are a literal Body. We share our immune system in a very real way.


And this, dear Reader, is where my blog post took a hard right and turned into a desperate plea to our pastor and elders not to let our church be plunged again into that faceless Hell. I won’t share much of what I said past this point, because I wouldn’t want to drag anything local into it by accident, nor embarrass anyone. But what is happening here must surely be happening in many places as mask dictates and threats of lockdown are once again coming down from on high. I honestly thought we’d at least have until late September, when cold and flu season started up, but the experimental injections have worsened the situation, so even our summer respite was shorter than it should have been.

But did my plea bear any fruit, you ask? Well, what do you think? Do you think a church that congratulated itself on being so wonderfully First-Peter-submissive the first time we were induced into this mass psychosis would feel at all like examining any evidence, even if it was just anecdotal and intuitive, as mine admittedly was, that they have, in fact, been doing great harm to their own ministry? Do you think that an influential group of people in a large church would turn on a dime to hear the heart of one who holds no place in their inner circle? Do you think that a bunch of community leaders with reputations as intelligent, educated people would buckle to the requests of a hillbilly with no degree at all?

Do you think they’re even capable of thinking anything other than what respectable people are expected to think?

Yeah. No.

They will comply. It is narrative uber alles here. To keep the peace, and to be known as good people, and because they trust the Science™ they will comply. Worship services are now masked and distanced, and praise the Lord we’re all such good citizens! Because they believe the narrative that staying apart makes us healthy, and they believe that they were right to comply the first time, they’ll go ahead and comply this flock right down into the grave. When lockdowns come, they’ll feel good about merely piping the music and preaching into our homes via Facebook (and if you’re a good citizen, unlike my perma-banned self, you’ll still be allowed on Facebook). They’ll call that “church”.

We will not.

Our family has been faced with 3 options. We can comply with the senseless dictates that only make everything–mentally, spiritually, and physically–worse, just so we can enjoy in some limited capacity the reduced, faceless kind of worship that is “allowed” to us by those outside the church who passionately hate whole-hearted, intimate, corporate worship of Jesus. We can go be just like the rest of the congregation, and then when the next “lockdown” comes, we can pretend with them that we’re all in it together, apart, in our individual prison cells.

We can, alternatively, go to this same meeting place, but mask-free, as we did before, dodging the mask-waving greeters, standing naked-faced and unashamed in our taped-off rows. I really don’t know how such intelligent people can find it at all reasonable that the singers and preachers go bare-faced while everyone less essential to Worship remains covered. It has to be humiliating to pretend that this makes any sense. I won’t, myself, torture my own mind with such illogic. I find the rigmarole to be emotionally exhausting, and antithetical to the entire purpose of corporate worship. I can’t again face the prospect of being so far out of line with the behavior of the rest of the church. I can handle being a little out of step–the story of my life, really–but for me, the masks serve only as a constant reminder that Covid is the real King around here, and we’ll do whatever Covid requires. I can’t worship with people who don’t even know what they’re really worshipping.

Our last option, and the one we will take, is to find a new group of Christians to worship with–one that values and respects human faces, imago Dei, normal human psychology, normal interactions, and normal physiology. There are believers out there that trust God’s design of our immune systems, and of normally functioning communities, as much as we do. We just have to find them.


We had some family stuff to keep us home yesterday, so I’m feeling a little bit less than enthusiastic about this coming week. It is past nine o’clock, which begins our school day, so I’ll put this up as is, though there is a lot more that I can (and probably will) say later.

 

Sorry About That!

I’m sorry you guys are getting a password-protected post in your feeds. I didn’t realize an email would be sent out to everybody for password-protected posts. I meant that last one that went out to remain private for the time being. Please forgive me and stick around for (hopefully) a public version of the same post.

 

Keto Crustless Lemon Meringue Pie

You can double this recipe, or triple it, very easily, to make it into a pie large enough to share with others. For this, you would want a crust, which I haven’t included in this recipe. I’ll add a low-carb pie crust in a new post. Or you could just do a web search. There are lots of recipes out there.

keto lemon meringue

This 2-serving crustless pie ended up being consumed by me and six small people. I gave them about a third of it, a big bite each. This breakfast ended up being my only meal of the day, it was so filling. You could make this a dessert and serve four fat-adapted people instead of two, but for me it’s a treat and a meal. Do not attempt to feed this as a dessert to people who ate carbohydrates with their meal. They’ll probably die.

Keto Lemon Meringue Pie

A crustless dessert made of lemon curd and meringue
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Cooling time3 hrs
Total Time3 hrs 10 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Keto
Keyword: keto, low carb
Servings: 2
Author: GAHCindy

Ingredients

  • 6 egg yolks
  • 5 tbsp butter or ghee
  • 2 tbsp erythritol/stevia blend sweetener adjust to personal preference
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested
  • 2 or 3 egg whites have at room temperature for best results
  • 1 tsp erythritol/stevia blend sweetener adjust to personal preference
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar

Instructions

  • Combine in a saucepan the egg yolks, butter or ghee, 2 T sweetener, lemon zest, and lemon juice.
  • Over medium heat, stir the mixture until it begins to thicken.
  • When the curd coats a spoon and begins to pull away from the bottom and sides of the pan with stirring, remove from heat.
  • Strain out lemon zest and lumps with a jelly strainer to leave a smooth curd.
  • Pour the curd into 2 individual ramekins or an 8-ounce baking dish.
  • Refrigerate for at least 3 hours, until completely cooled.
  • Just before serving, use a hand mixer or stand mixer to whip two to three of the reserved egg whites with 1 teaspoon of sweetener and the cream of tartar. Beat until stiff peaks form.
  • Spoon or pipe beaten egg whites onto the top of the lemon curd.
  • Place under a low broiler until meringue is browned. Watch carefully, as this goes very quickly!
  • Serve immediately, or hide in the schoolroom and eat both servings yourself.

If you’re strictly carnivore (and I typically am, but I can get away with some lemon juice and sweetener, so why not?), you can make a savory version by leaving out the plant stuff and adding just salt, whatever seasonings you tolerate, and a tablespoon or so of chicken broth. It tastes like little more than eggs and butter, but the texture is a very different experience. I quite like it.

 

Carnivore Diet and the Christian Worldview

Has all that evolution talk got you in a tizzy? 

A discerning reader asked a question a while back, and it’s something that’s been on my to-blog list ever since. It’s a very important question, and one I’ve spent a bit of time thinking through.

Well I do wonder what you think about why the Lord created man in the garden of Eden and told Adam and Eve in Genesis 1:29 ~ “Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. (and verse 30: And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.)” It wasn’t until after the flood that He told Noah and his family that they could eat meat. …I’m not against meat. I eat some beef, some turkey, and chicken, and salmon… I also eat vegetables and fruit. It just seems to me that in light of the verses quoted above, that we humans were created to eat vegetables originally. (And I don’t believe in evolution so I don’t think we’ve “evolved” to eat only one thing or the other. ;-)) Just tho’t I’d ask you what you think about those verses and what you think they mean in light of eating various foods.
In His grace, Mrs. O

Thank you so much, Mrs. O! I don’t know what I’d do without comments like this.

I pointed out that after we left the Garden of Eden, God gave us animals for use as clothing immediately, and it is implicit therein that humans began using them for meat soon after leaving the garden. Cain and Abel didn’t have their little scuffle because Abel was sacrificing something he barely needed. This was his best. That very likely means it was his food. God had clearly commanded animal sacrifice, and nothing else would suit Him.

It would seem very odd to me if they were raising and sacrificing animals and wearing them as clothing, but not eating the meat also. But maybe they did waste the meat and righteously consume only plants. I think you come away with a very different meaning–and an anti-Gospel one, at that–by reading the Cain and Abel story that way, but let’s roll with it. I can’t say for sure that they were eating meat, if I’m being very, very pedantic with only the explicit text, so let’s just say that the first generation of Man never had even a thought of eating meat, and the only killing of animals that they did was for sacrifice and possibly clothing.

All I can come up with is: So what?

That was then, this is now. Things changed after Eden, and then they changed again after the flood. There was, for one thing, a cleansing of the human race, wiping out the offspring of the Nephilim and the human race (about which, I won’t elaborate further, but oh, my, the things they don’t tell you in Bible school!). The earth itself also was laid waste, and the plants and animals that were preserved underwent that same culling. These genetic bottlenecks likely introduced even more corruption to our genome, and that of the plants and animals we ate, than was already there. This would (theoretically, but logically) have made us even less able to digest the plants than before.

Noah was told explicitly after the Flood to eat (clean) meat. The restriction on eating meat, if there was one, was lifted at that point regardless. Later on, in the New Covenant, the distinction between clean and unclean meats was also voided. We need to eat meat. I think all of this taken together establishes that a strictly carnivore diet is at least permissible to the Bible-believer. There may be some angle I’ve missed and that’s what the comment section is for, so let me have them, please.

But what about eating only meat? There’s something just flat-out worldly and unbelieving about that. Underneath the health objections, which don’t hold up very well in my experience and opinion, there’s just this visceral reaction to the idea that we evolved this way, and anything built on that foundation must be wrong, wrong, wrong. When I came across the carnivore way of thinking about food, I wanted to reject it out of hand, too. It’s all evolution all the time with these people!

We did not evolve this way. We devolved this way.

I listen to a lot of diet and lifestyle podcasts while I’m doing less mind-intensive things like weeding and running. I also read a lot of nutrition and metabolism-focused blogs. It is by-and-large a Godless conversation, sadly, and it can be very tiresome even to weirdos like me who are energized, rather than discouraged, by a good dose of cognitive dissonance.

I’m with you, Mrs. O. (At least, I think I am.) Since starting the carnivore way of eating, and for the first time in my grain-glutted life, my teeth are now in extremely good shape, but I’m grinding them down to pitiful nubs having to listen to evolution-this and ancestral-that all the time.

Most Christians aren’t going to even entertain the thought of the carnivore approach if the only supporting narrative–and friends, it is nothing but a narrative, a just-so story–is the modern creation myth of millions of years of evolution. For what it’s worth, the same evolutionary nonsense is also trotted out to justify vegetarian eating, i.e. our monkey brains were only able to grow so large because we learned to farm the extra calories required for such intelligence. They can and do stuff just anything into that evolutionary box.

I have something a lot less flexible, but thankfully perfect and infallible, to base my life choices on: the Word of God. Like Mrs. O., I believe that the Genesis account is literal: six days, two sexes, and only one No-No Tree. I’m one hundred percent in agreement that Adam and Eve were put in a garden and told to eat the plants, except for that one. I further believe that everything that God gave them to eat was good.

And then something happened that changed our very DNA, and that of the entire living world. I don’t know what Eden was like, whether there was any entropy, how long it was meant to last, whether eating was a mere pleasure rather than a physiological necessity. So many questions arise when you start wondering how the metaphysical and the physical met in that place.

But once we’re out of that Garden, meat makes plenty of sense.

I can’t say for sure what happened over the millennia on a physiological level, but my guess is that, because Earth became corrupt, and the entire creation began to groan, much of the nutrition that was available to us through plants became less and less accessible throughout the generations. Our genetic makeup didn’t permit perfect processing of the foods anymore, and the foods themselves developed hardier defenses.:

17And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;

18Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;

19In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.

Think of lectins as thorns, and you’ll see why grains might not be the best thing for us.

As for the bizarre-sounding fact that many carnivores have discovered they have to eat only meat, I observe that we are at the end of many millennia of devolution, and we are less and less able to process these foods as our DNA inexorably declines in quality. Except in times of plenty such as we’ve enjoyed for my entire life in this country, needing “the herb of the field” is a hard fact of life, and in many ways a detrimental one, or it wouldn’t be part of the Curse, as it clearly is in the quoted text.

As I said before, I might myself have to eat something besides meat in order to get enough calories to survive someday. I don’t look forward to that, because my health would suffer, but hard times do come. As a nation, we are long overdue for some collective judgment, which I expect will rain on the just and the unjust. Plate me up some lentils, in that case. My soul will survive that just fine. In the meantime, I’m storing up as much health and strength as I can by eating what works best for my body.

Praise Him for providing meat!

I love my brothers and sisters in Christ and would dearly love to see them in better health, so that the Lord’s work can be done with vigor, and his Word elucidated by clear, unclouded minds. Through use of the evolutionary narrative, Satan is convincing many of his enemies to become weak, both physically and mentally, by turning them off on a gut level to the notion that animal nutrition is superior to plant nutrition before they really get a chance to think about it.

Hopefully you can see by now that a carnivore diet, at the very least, does not fail to fit in with the Gospel narrative, aka the Truth. It certainly provides a better explanation for why we need to eat meat than “Monkeys with tiny brains dropped out of trees and started eating brains, so their brains got bigger.” (I know, evolution-worshippers, that this is a gross over-simplification of your beloved stories. But if you believe in evolution, I’d far rather talk to you about your soul than your food.)

Life requires death, on both a physical and a metaphysical level. Animal sacrifice is done away with, but animal eating is not…yet. The Good News here is that all things are being restored. Until that day, we receive with thanks the sustenance that God provides.

What think you? Anybody here looking at that pb&j sandwich a little bit less lovingly now?

Lie: A Child is a Choice

This post is a chapter from my ebook, ConDeceived. I want to republish it sometime, but I’d need to rework a great deal of it. Guess who has time for that? Not me! But it was a useful little work. I might dust it off. If you want a copy, let me know and I’ll share it with you directly.

Lie: A Child is A Choice

“How many kids do you want?”

This is often the first question a newly married couple will find themselves answering. In fact, it is often the first question they ask each other before even agreeing to tie the knot. It is, after all, the height of irresponsibility to go into our marriages without a clear idea of how many years will be taken up in diaper-changing and face-washing. These things must be planned for, lest we end up in the poorhouse! It’s right there in the Bible in the twentieth chapter of…oh, wait. No, it isn’t.

The idea that that having children is a big decision and one not to be undertaken lightly is so common in our times that it has become cliché. Thanks to the language of the contraceptive culture, no responsible couple ever just gets pregnant. No, we talk about getting pregnant, then we think about getting pregnant for a little while longer, then we research getting pregnant, and then, if we don’t let our anything scare us out of it, we decide to get pregnant. After the birth, we research the best ways to stop this traumatic thing from happening to us again until the next time we decide we want to do this.

All of this sounds perfectly reasonable to non-Christians, as it should. They walk alone, and it is understandable that they feel a need to control their futures in this way. The once-born think they’ll only live once, after all, and after that, oblivion. They don’t want to mess up their one shot at perfect happiness with the wrong number of kids!
Unfortunately, this has also come to sound perfectly reasonable to a large majority of Christians.

One of my favorite quotes–at least, it used to be, before I gave it ten seconds of sustained thought–is this:

“Making the decision to have a child – it’s momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking outside your body.” –Elizabeth Stone

I have a daughter. She has my dirty-blonde hair, my mouth (in both looks and loudness), and my insatiable appetite for red foods. The only fight we’ve ever had was over the last spoonful of cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving. She is also my husband’s daughter, and resembles his side of the family in a hundred different ways. She is a blessing to us, from the tip of her pretty head to the toes inside those ballet flats she’s always wearing.

But she is not primarily our child. She exists, physically, because my genes and my husband’s had a happy meeting and intertwined to become a unique set of DNA. However, she does not exist because we willed it. She exists because God willed it, from the foundations of the world. If you think that one can ever really choose to have a child, ask someone who suffers from infertility how much of a choice she has had in the matter.

For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. -–Colossians 1:16

God exists outside of time, eternal, so this verse isn’t just referring to the beginning work of Creation. This verse means that Christ created everything that ever will exist, too. From the moment He spoke the words “Let there be light” to the Last Trumpet, He created it all, including the children that we humans like to pretend we choose to make.

My daughter does not exist for my pleasure. I enjoy her. We play dolls and talk about things that boys would never understand. She and I are great friends (unless there is cranberry sauce on the line). Barring some tragedy, I expect her to be a blessed part of my life until I die. Of course I enjoy her! I can’t even summon the image of her little face to mind without getting a thrill of joy all the way down to my toes.

If she existed for my pleasure, then whenever she failed to please me in some way, I would have the right to exact whatever harsh punishment I like. Or to end her life. After all, she would be violating the purpose of her own existence by displeasing me.
But she exists for God’s pleasure, not mine.

My daughter does not exist for my purposes. While there are many joys and material improvements that flow from the blessing of having children, she does not exist for the sake of my own purposes. There are many benefits to having a tightly-knit, loving family, but if those benefits are dampened by the effects of the Curse (illness, death, financial difficulties, stress, etc.), that still wouldn’t give me the right to reject her. She is not here simply—or even primarily–for my sake.

Does she at least exist by my will, then? Since technology gives us the option of not having children, hasn’t it finally become a big decision that we make, as the Elizabeth Stone quote says? Because we have this power, shouldn’t we use it to make the best possible world we can for ourselves and whatever children we decide to have?

“Worthy are you, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they existed and were created.”
–Revelation 4:11

In this verse, the twenty-four elders are singing to God about his command of the whole universe. All things are created by His will, even when we think we’re doing it ourselves.

The language of choice has convinced us that that we, ourselves, hold the keys to our own future. The cultural attitude that springs up from this “choice” mentality is one of ownership of our children, as if they were merely expensive pets, rather than eternal souls whose existence is for purposes that we can’t even fathom. We’ve wrested the power of Creation from the One who rightfully controls these things. But we don’t really control as much as we think we do. Only God is worthy to hold the power of creation in His hands.

The heart of man plans his way,
but the Lord establishes his steps. –Proverbs 16:9

So now we have kind of a conundrum on our hands, don’t we? If God is really in control of all of this, then why do we have this ability to resist participating in that creation? If God willed this child into existence, then didn’t he also not will those lives we’ve decided not to risk forming, for whatever our personal reasons are? And the answer is, I think, yes.

And there is no good news in that answer. He has willed this generation to have that choice, and He has willed us to take it.

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
the fruit of the womb a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
are the children of one’s youth.
Blessed is the man
who fills his quiver with them!
He shall not be put to shame
when he speaks with his enemies in the gate
–Psalm 127:3-5

The father of many “shall not be put to shame.” In contrast, when God’s judgment falls on a people, He takes away their sons and daughters.

25 “As for you, son of man, surely on the day when I take from them their stronghold, their joy and glory, the delight of their eyes and their soul’s desire, and also their sons and daughters…

–Ezekiel 24:25

Our unfettered control over the creation of our children is a judgment, not a happy technological boon that God has granted us. He has handed us over to our selfishness, and we are already beginning to reap the bitter fruit of that childlessness in this generation, as the demographic time bomb ticks down to zero. The next generation, the one that was supposed to carry on where we leave off, hasn’t shown up for work.

We’ve taken our Godly heritage, which is clearly explained to us in the Bible, in the very language of Creation (It is good.) and smashed it against sharp rocks, breaking it into bite-sized pieces for our own personal enjoyment, instead of taking it in its full wonder and meeting its challenges with joy and thanksgiving. We are paying for this now, as a nation, and we will pay for this in the future.

Please note that I don’t speak of any individual’s heart, as I don’t know anybody’s heart–often even my own. This is, at this late date, a collective failure of understanding. I’m speaking of a massive confusion that many well-meaning Christians of our generation have stumbled into due to a lack of confident and fearless preaching on the subject. However, collective guilt is built on individual guilt, and we must own our faults when we see them in our own hearts.

Christians don’t really, as a culture, believe any of these verses about God’s hand in creation (or procreation) anymore. We don’t seem to believe that God is in control of much of anything anymore, if He ever was. If we did, we’d beg Him to let us participate in the procreation of His own favored work: Mankind.

He has “crowned him with glory and honor”, and here we, Christians, are behaving as though people are a scourge. He has given us the blessed responsibility of nurturing these relationships, and we are treating them as if they are a burden, even to the point of preventing their very conception.

Our lifestyles may impose burdens. Our broken hearts and bodies create burdens. The brokenness of our children even imposes burdens. But our children themselves are never burdens. They are gifts. We should receive them as such.

Summertime. Stock-taking Time.

The Hillbilly Homeschool for Jesus finds itself at the end of another “school year”.

It’s not the end, really, just a transition to the summer portion of the school year, with a little less math and a lot more sunshine. Also, I don’t have to document attendance for a while. I may have time to blog! The coming year will be my firstborn’s last year of secondary education.  We’re about to launch one, y’all! And it makes me all kinds of nervous.

Is this arrow straight and properly fletched? Did we aim well? Will it hit its target? 

And what was its target? I’ve been doing this day in and day out for so long I can scarcely remember the beginning. I went looking through the archives of GAH 1.0 to try and recover what exactly I was thinking when I started this homeschooling thing. One thing that won’t surprise old-time readers of my blog is that I am not nearly as cocksure of everything as I was when I started out. I have a lot more wisdom now, but also a much better awareness of my limitations.

Did my reasons for homeschooling change? Nope. Thank God, we started out with a firm purpose. If anything, our motivations have become more fervent than ever. We’re at the end of one child’s upbringing, but there are seven more behind that one, and some have barely learned to hold a pencil yet. I have twelve more years of this to do. I’d better be sure of why I’m doing it.

I had all the usual educational and God-honoring reasons for homeschooling, but I also had the lifestyle reason:

All the pointless bustling about from place to place kept me from ever really knowing my family. And it kept them from knowing me. Most importantly, it kept me from knowing God. Church was just another place we had to hurry to get to. My parents were just the people who made me go there. God was just something you do when you aren’t doing something else.
I don’t want to live that way, and I really, really don’t want my kids to live that way. So that’s why we homeschool, in a nutshell: so we can take our time and get it right.

I see a lot of newer homeschoolers (and man, there are a lot of new homeschoolers now) making the mistake of trying to make homeschooling something they do anywhere but home. Lessons here, sports there, competitions everywhere. I’m not saying they’ll get a poor education this way, especially if they’re of the more extroverted kind. In fact, they may get a superior “education”. But there are non-academic needs that can go unfulfilled when we allow ourselves be driven by sports schedules and co-op obligations. But if I have any regrets at all–and I’m not sure I do–they are related to our lack of collaboration with other homeschoolers. The community is important.

If other families are motivated by the outside stuff, then they should do it with all gusto, and I don’t want anyone to take me to be saying otherwise. But I fear that in the mainstreaming of homeschooling, the “home” part is falling by the wayside. For many, the co-op way might be more fun. The sports may be an integral part of what your children need. Having eyes on your family by other, likeminded people, will certainly be more reassuring than doing it on your own. Do these things!

But don’t neglect the quiet of the home, parents. The fact that my children are able to feel safe, peaceful, unhurried, productive, and purposeful in our home, rather than only rushing around outside of it, looking to the outside world for approval and direction, will make them far more capable as adults of ordering their lives without too much regard for worldly expectations.

Too much time spent away from home, even when the whole family is together, will make your house a lifeless place you only go when there’s nothing important to do.

Don’t spend so much time running around that your children have no time to think, no time to wander aimlessly, no time to ask you those small, easy-to-skip-over questions, the answers to which build up to a whole world view. It is, after all, their hearts that you’re after. It takes time to nurture hearts, and that time needs to be quiet and private if you want them to grow well.

Another purpose that we had in homeschooling was, of course, to train our children in discerning the times and choosing the Godly path.

In, Naive, Unworldly Homeschoolers, I scoffed at the idea that my children wouldn’t know how to deal with the world:

The basis of the “real world” complaint seems to be that if a child doesn’t go to a public school, he won’t learn how to be pure in the face of the sin of others. Exposure to bullies, peer pressure, drugs, anti-Christian authority figures and curriculum, and any number of other spiritually unhealthy things that children must face every day in public schools are, in this argument, held up as necessary way stations on the road to maturity.  And I admit, that line of reasoning sounds really compelling at first. After all, practice makes perfect! It’s right there in the Bible where it says…um…no.

 

I can’t find anything that points to the soundness of having your children exposed to wrongdoing from early on so that they can resist worldliness. While there is nothing there about the benefits of exposing children to “diverse” worldviews, there is much about the perils of casting stumbling blocks before the weak and malleable souls of children.

I still believe this, whole-heartedly. I’m watching my friends’ children, both homeschooled and public schooled, begin to grapple with the world as it has been presented to them. My heart aches when I compare one set of young adults to the other.

They all, whether public- or home-schooled, peer anxiously into the doorway of the adult world that they’re expected to enter and have no idea where they fit into it. They’re all going off to college and work, vulnerable and clueless, eager, the perfect mark for those who would take advantage of their naiveté. They all experience the same hopes and fears.

But I’ve noticed that only one set is able to smile at me with a whole-hearted smile. There’s a shadow behind the smiles of the other set. 

One set has a clear idea of what will give them peace in life. The other set is burdened with knowledge of things that shouldn’t even be talked about by decent people. The homeschooled set isn’t ignorant of sin, or of the zeitgeist. I talk about what we see out there with my kids often, and they view it all through a Biblical lens. They know, at age-appropriate levels, about abortion, sexual sins, drugs, and anything else you care to throw at them. They have a very good understanding of the world, and they know who their Enemy is.

They’ll make mistakes when interacting with the world, absolutely, but I have no fear that they’ll come to view dysfunction as a perfectly unobjectionable “lifestyle”. If they turn from Christ to follow the world, it will not be because they were raised in ignorance of these things, but because they are actively rejecting the Truth. (Oh, pray for the children!)

One set of kids has been assaulted daily with the message that they should not only not reject sinful urges, but that they should embrace it as a vital part of their very identity. While their Christian parents have sincerely done as much as they could on nights and weekends to teach them correctly, their fragile souls have been torn in two by the Enemy, who has had every useful hour of every day to indoctrinate them in his twisted ways for the last 12 years. It has taken a toll, and I grieve for their loss of innocence.

I’m not speaking only of the massive push for sexual sin to be embraced. Gay pride is certainly the most brazen manifestation of Satanic pressure those kids are feeling, but it started much more subtly, long ago, with the idea that parents are just biological units meant to keep a child materially alive while the government (and the church, frankly) is in the best position to teach children everything they need to know. We have been taught for generations to “honor thy authorities”, instead of thy father and mother. When I was in school, there were some aspects of our lives that we just knew (because the schools deliberately planted this seed in our hearts) that mom and dad couldn’t be trusted to understand. It has only gotten worse in the last 20 years.

As much as I am talking about the sexual license and confusion, I’m even more talking about the “milder” sins of disobedience to and contempt for parents, alienation from family as a lesser social group. Without that cultural violation of the fifth commandment, none of these more demonic manifestations could have been allowed to grow.

Now these young adults enter a very dangerous world, and only one set of them realizes that their parents are their best allies. The other set enters it thinking that they are alone.

In another post, Homeschooled Kid Grows Up, I wrote this:

(G)ood parents don’t raise their children in fear of how those children will judge them in the future, but in the loving hope that they’re making the right decisions

And, I will admit that this is the one that keeps me up at night.

What if my children don’t appreciate what I’ve done here? I do not raise my children with an eye toward pleasing Man, even when that Man is my grown-up son. As I told my friend the other day, there are holes in my parenting, and in their formal education, that you could drive a truck through. I know that what I’ve done isn’t enough. It can never be enough. I hate to break this to you, if you’ve even had the stamina to keep reading a post this long, but you aren’t going to be able to do enough for your children, either.

We can all only make an honest effort, taking into account our limitations. God has to fill in the gaps.

I don’t really know how to end this thing. I just wanted to reminisce a little bit and consider what the next twelve years of homeschooling will look like for our family, and whether I want to change anything based on what I’m observing in my (gulp) young adult offspring. As we graduate this one, we’ll be beginning phonics with our youngest. We have a lot of years left to see how these things turn out, and I hope the younger set can benefit from whatever we’ve learned with the older ones. I begin this last year of education for this child with only one panicky thought:

What did I screw up, and is one year enough time to fix it?

Homeschooled Kid Grows Up, Disagrees With Parents

This is a repost from Get Along Home, written October 24, 2011

Obviously, the brainwashing wasn’t effective

A while back, Arby, at The Homeschool Apologist, addressed an article by a homeschooled anti-homeschooler. It’s a good post, and defends homeschooling pretty well, but I think that he concedes too much in even addressing whether or not the now-grown Libby Anne’s parents were correct in their method of raising her. Frankly, the issue is less about whether her “quiverfull”  parents were damaging their children by homeschooling than it is about whether or not they even have a right to believe as they do.

Though Libby Anne’s parents don’t actually identify with the “quiverfull” movement, she gives them the moniker in order to streamline the stereotyping process. She then proceeds to explain, with an apparently straight face, that even though they raised her quite well, they shouldn’t have been allowed to do so because the rest of the “normal” people do it differently. But whether they should have raised their children according to such rigidly “traditional” roles, is neither here nor there, in my opinion. We can have that conversation some other time.

The real question isn’t, Should people with weird lifestyles be allowed to homeschool?, but the more basic Do parents have a right to get it wrong? And I think the answer is yes. I’ve gotten all kinds of flack for saying that in the past, but it’s true. Parents have a right to screw up without interference. If they don’t, then we’d better all hand our kids over to the “experts” right now—the ones who teach your sixth graders these kinds of things–because not one of us is going to raise our children to adulthood without making some bad calls in good faith. Might as well make sure they’re all screwed up in the same, state-sanctioned ways, I guess! I know several adults whose parents did horrible things to them—divorce, exposure to pornography and violence on television, emotional neglect—but they were culturally “normal”, so no one questioned their right to do these things.

But when a family has the nerve to set out on a culturally unusual path and one of their children ends up disagreeing with them, even though that child was never abandoned or abused—was in fact loved and educated and treated quite well—well, that is a bridge too far!

Libby Anne admits that her childhood was happy, just not “normal”. Her main problem seems to be that she was taught to do menial chores like housework and taking care of siblings (you know, stuff that feminism tells us is beneath any sentient human being). She went to college, apparently with her parents’ blessing and financial support, but complains that her parents didn’t really want her to be educated because she was a woman suited only for being inside the home! They gave her responsibility instead of treating her like an overgrown child like the “normal” teenagers! They had the nerve to think that dating is a dysfunctional way to find a mate and hope for better things for their daughter!

Libby Anne’s parents committed the astounding crime of actually believing the things they said they believed. So much so that they taught it to their own children. I know! String ‘em up!

It sounds to me like Libby Anne’s parents did a smashing job. She’s a well-educated, articulate young woman who expresses herself quite adequately. The worst thing she can find to say about her parents is that they weren’t hypocrites. In keeping with their Biblical beliefs, they raised their children against the grain of the culture—never an easy thing to do. Her real problem isn’t with homeschooling, but that she wishes her parents had intentionally raised her to disagree with them. What kind of parent does that?

Perhaps someday Libby Anne will have a child of her own and know that good parents don’t raise their children in fear of how those children will judge them in the future, but in the loving hope that they’re making the right decisions. (Apparently I misread. She does have a child, and still doesn’t see what’s wrong with her attitude toward her own parents.) Libby Anne’s entire argument seems to be that her parents really believed all that Jesus stuff, and they shouldn’t have been allowed to teach their children what they believed without interference from the state.  I wonder how Libby Anne would feel if she lived in an actual Christian nation where the schools reflected Christian beliefs? She might possibly wish to take advantage of the right to homeschool her children so she could teach them differently, then, mightn’t she?

Reading the article, I kept wondering how I’d feel if it were my child turning against me in such a public way. What if one (or more) of my children grows up to not only disagree with my decision to homeschool him, but to actively oppose the rights of parents to oversee the education of their own children in this way? Is there anything I can do to keep this from happening? Unfortunately, I don’t think there is.

I can’t raise my children according what someone else believes, and neither could Libby Anne’s parents. She faults them for homeschooling her because she wishes that she’d been raised by people who agree with her adult self. But how could any loving parent send his child to be taught things that he believes are wrong, out of nothing more than fear of that child judging him later on?

Congratulations, Libby Anne. You finally fit in with the rest of the secular culture you’ve longed to join. You no longer even understand the most basic human liberty—freedom of religion.

Naïve, Unworldly Homeschoolers

This is a repost from Get Along Home, written December 19, 2012

In any discussion with critics of home education, the objection will eventually crop up that “homeschoolers won’t know how to deal with the real world when they’re grown.”

It seems safe to assume that those who raise this objection aren’t worried that homeschooled children won’t be able to figure out how to buy groceries, drive a car, or effectively conduct personal business, given the fact that they are raised by people who do these things right in front of them every day.

Instead, the questioner seems most of the time to be referring to the cultural and moral differences between Christian homes and the non-Christian public schools. The objection could be accurately restated as “Homeschoolers will see so little of the brazen sinfulness of mainstream American culture that they will be shocked into helpless paralysis at the sight of {insert popular but blatantly sinful and unbiblical behavior or attitude here}. As if Good were such a weak little thing that the first whiff it gets of Evil will cause it to clutch its girly skirts and faint!

The basis of the “real world” complaint seems to be that if a child doesn’t go to a public school, he won’t learn how to be pure in the face of the sin of others. Exposure to bullies, peer pressure, drugs, anti-Christian authority figures and curriculum, and any number of other spiritually unhealthy things that children must face every day in public schools are, in this argument, held up as necessary way stations on the road to maturity.  And I admit, that line of reasoning sounds really compelling at first. After all, practice makes perfect! It’s right there in the Bible where it says…um…no.

I can’t find anything that points to the soundness of having your children exposed to wrongdoing from early on so that they can resist worldliness. While there is nothing there about the benefits of exposing children to “diverse” worldviews, there is much about the perils of casting stumbling blocks before the weak and malleable souls of children.

In fact, it is wise for a child to have time learn how to deal with in-his-heart sin before we force him to come to terms with the in-his-face kind.

“Train up a child in the way he should go.” “Bad company corrupts good morals.” “Yada, yada, yawn.” says the American Christian parent. “My kid is different.

They somehow believe that children can learn to fight the good fight by being forced into the fray before being sufficiently trained in spiritual warfare–most of the time before the child has even come to a place of true repentance! Given the spiritual condition of this so-called Christian nation after many decades of that kind of thinking, I’d say we’ve got pretty good evidence that this approach hasn’t worked very well.

If this need to be exposed to wickedness and destructive behavior from an early age is really such a good reason for sending children to public schools, then could somebody please explain to me the purpose of all these anti-bullying, anti-drug, and anti-violence programs? Because if those programs were to work (which they won’t), Christian children in public schools would suddenly be in grave danger of becoming just as naïve as their homeschooling counterparts! Wouldn’t that be awful?

Stop trying to shelter your kids, public schoolers! They need this!

We all know quite well it that would be a good thing if every child were unbullied, unaware of even the existence of drugs, and able to trust that the people who are in authority over them are looking out for their best interests instead of, oh, trying to sleep with them, for instance. So why, if homeschooling parents are able to provide such a healthy environment for their children, is that a bad thing?

Homeschooling, contrary to this “real world” line of argument, is not done in order to keep children from finding out about sin. We can’t do that, because no one is innocent—not the children we’re raising, nor their parents. All have sinned, and keeping my children from public schools has not kept them from the “real world” of sin. Learning how to turn away from the World is a lesson that must be learned no matter the physical location of the child. It is not the existence of sin that must be taught on a daily basis, but what to do with sin in our own hearts.

I am constantly amazed (though I probably shouldn’t be by now) by the number of people who think that raising children in an environment that rejects the very idea of sin is the same thing as teaching them to confront evil. It’s not. It is teaching them to look on sin passively by removing even the language by which a child might articulate an objection to it. What immersion in secular schools does is train children first to tolerate sinful behavior, then to applaud it, and finally to join it.

Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”–1 Corinthians 15:33

Cultural norms are inculcated primarily through education, not (contrary to mainstream–dare I call it naïve?–Christian belief) through occasional dinner-table conversations and AWANA. Those things may be influential in varying degrees for different children, but it is what is learned during the useful hours of the day–the work hours–that becomes a child’s baseline for thinking about the world. For public schools, the baseline is one of amoral “preferences” and outcome-based decision making (i.e.: Say no to drugs because they’ll make you ugly and poor. Don’t have sex…unless you can make sure you’re “protected” from the physical consequences of it.) For Christians the baseline is (or should be) God’s word.

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
–Proverbs 22:6

Every Christian parent’s job is to make sure that when our children meet the “real world”, they’ll know how to please God in their interactions with it. Which method of child-rearing seems more likely to accomplish that goal?

Public schooled children and home educated children are all going to be tempted to commit sexual sin. Homeschooling won’t change that. But which child is more likely to view sexual sin as normal and tolerable, even admirable, rather than unacceptable, yet forgivable?

Both sets of children are going to have to learn to turn away from behaviors like excessive drinking and drug abuse, or self-harm and violent anger. But which child will believe that these things are wrong primarily because they hamper material or social success? Which child is more likely to internalize the truth that these behaviors are wrong because they are, at their core, sinful abuses of God’s most treasured creation: the one who hears it only in his “spare time”, or the one who gets it daily with his writing lesson?

Both sets of children will have to learn to choose the right kinds of friends. Which is more likely to do so: the child who has learned to “make no friendship with an angry man” and then has been guided in that by a parent’s heart in choosing his friends, or the child who has been told that everyone of his own age (and this is now even further segregated out by academic ability) is his “peer”?

A righteous man is cautious in friendship, but the way of the wicked leads them astray. –Proverbs 12:26

Which child is more likely to turn away—whether in disgust or confusion makes no difference, so long as he turns away—from the invitation of these “peers” to join them in immorality: the child who has as his default attitude an anything goes, “tolerant” worldview, or the child who has as his baseline a Christ-centered and constructive family-based culture?

My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother–Proverbs 1:8

It seems to me that homeschooled children are more than equipped to “deal with” sin, if by “deal with” you mean “repent of it”. That is something they are certainly never going to find out about in public school. If spiritual strength is the goal, then public schooling doesn’t seem to have very much going for it. However, if your argument is that homeschooled kids might grow up to find themselves embarrassed not to know the meaning of certain slang or where to buy a bag of some illicit substance, then I say that’s the kind of naiveté that we could all use a little bit more of.

Virtue is harder to be got than a knowledge of the world; and if lost in a young man, is seldom recover’d. Sheepishness and ignorance of the world, the faults imputed to a private education, are neither the necessary consequences of being bred at home, nor if they were, are they incurable evils. Vice is the more stubborn, as well as the more dangerous evil of the two;… –John Locke

You Need to Hear Some Preaching

But I’m a girl, so it won’t be Bible-preaching.

I’ve got a number of friends and family who, because of the example I set, know that they ought to cut the bad foods out of their diet. Unlike many people on a Standard American Diet, they even have some idea what those bad foods are.

The problem is, I’m the only voice they hear this stuff from, and I lack gravitas. It doesn’t matter that I have taken my body from pudgy and sickly to slender and strong. It doesn’t matter that I can run circles around people half my age. It doesn’t matter that I look hotter than I did when I was 21. (I was never very pretty, but I’m now a solid 9 out of 10, if you’re just comparing today’s me to other mes I’ve been.) It doesn’t matter that I am not aging at anything like the accelerated rate of my age cohort. None of my success can be seen as anything but a fluke, because I’m just a congenital weirdo who does things like having “too many” babies and then homeschooling them. It is certainly not just anybody who can be healthy at the ripe old age of…however old I am now. It takes a special genetic predisposition, aka luck, right?

I’m not a doctor or a certified nutritionist. I don’t even have a YouTube channel. I’ve considered it, since watching videos is apparently what everybody really wants to do. Alas, I have a face fit only for radio, and voice fit only for print, so I won’t be venturing into that world.

What I do have is this little blog and my equally tiny real-life social network. And while I’m over here with no credentials whatsoever, trying to save everybody a lot of self-inflicted grief, every magazine, newspaper, tv show, doctor, nurse, athlete, friend, and neighbor is telling my loved ones to eat ever more seed oils, grains, and sugar. And now they’re trying to turn us on to this bizarre fake meat that is supposed to be better for you than plain old, God-given meat.

Lord, help me fight this giant industry that’s trying to kill my people!

Add to these influences the fact that all those processed foods are nigh-on orgasmic to eat. When the tv is off, and you’re finally listening to your rational self and trying to reject that hyperpalatable food, your traitorous brain will start singing the same tune. Your dopamine-loving brain will tell you anything at all to justify the next hit of sweet-fat-salty bliss. Next thing you know, you’re face down in a bowl of macaroni salad, and your insulin is higher than Hunter Biden after the Chinese dropped the latest payment in his off-shore account.

All the people (but me) say this is perfectly reasonable eating behavior!

You can probably see by now that I’m getting a little frustrated trying to convince the people I love most to just stop.

Stop giving yourself cancer.

Stop giving yourself heart disease.

Stop giving yourself diabetes.

Take responsibility for what you put into your body.

You, my beloved friends and family, are giving yourself these diseases. Every time you open your mouth to put in whatever insane food happens to be in front of you, with no sense of responsibility for the effects that it will have on your body (and your mind, but I’ll get to that later), you are sinning against your own body.

Do I take it too far calling it a sin? But I told you I was going to be preaching, didn’t I?

Is there not a point where intentional self-harm begins to carry moral implications? You be the judge of your own behavior.

There was a time when you truly couldn’t be blamed for your physical condition. There was a time, before I started telling you these things, that you really thought that the food pyramid was science from on high, rather than a marketing ploy to boost grain sales. There was a time when it was still possible to believe that your illnesses were all just genetic, just normal aging, just bad luck. There was a time when you could have no idea that you had caused your own problems in large part by your own choices.

But you can’t be ignorant any longer, because I’m standing out here on my street corner with my (bun-less) sandwich-board sign telling you that you don’t have to go through the Hell of metabolic illness. Salvation is here! (Understand, please, that I am absolutely not equating having a healthy diet with saving your soul. I’m going to keep torturing this metaphor until it confesses…something, anyway.)

Actions come from belief, and belief comes from hearing, and how will you hear if I don’t preach to you?

To my dismay, I’ve discovered that what most people are willing to believe has more to do with how often they hear a thing than whether what they’re hearing makes any sense at all. (Consider this your invitation to throw out your lying tv, also.) If you hear over and over that whole grain bread is a health food and that meat will kill you, you will eat whole grain bread and cut down on meat, even though you can see with your own two eyes that you haven’t gotten healthy by following this advice. Your fat, sickly doctor will look you unabashedly in the eye and tell you to lose weight, and you’ll do the same things to lose weight that your fat, sickly doctor is doing. And guess what? You’ll be fat and sickly, too. 

People in authority, people in white coats, people in front of tv cameras, and simply the people from whom you desire social approval just keep repeating the low-fat, anti-meat mantra. They win your mind because they keep repeating the lie. I’ve been remiss in that. I cut back on saying it because I don’t want to bother people, but repetition is the key.

You know that the “healthy” way of eating will kill you; you’re watching it happen in real time. But you still need to hear from the other side daily, kind of like reading your Bible to fight the devil’s incessant tricks. So, for the sake of my loved ones (and you strangers on the internet) I’ll repeat this until it either sinks in or I die trying:

Repent!

Stop making excuses. Do the emotionally and socially painful work of changing your diet. You have a choice to become sicker or healthier, every single time you eat. I will be tickled pink to give specifics to anybody who asks, and feel free to browse my scanty archives.

If you are interested in hearing more, here are some preachers you may find quite a bit more credible than apparently I have been.

I don’t always agree with everything that all of them say. Some of them are nerdier or meatier or more plant-tolerant than others. They’ll all get to you to a much healthier place than your current advisors can.

Ken Berry, MD

Dr. Cywes, the Carb Addiction Doc

Dr. Berg

Ivor Cummins

Shawn Baker, Meat Rx