Sunday, December 21, 2014


Many folks struggle with the same temptation repeatedly.  At other times, we receive an entirely strange temptation, or a once in a lifetime chance to do it right or wrong.  I had one of those recently and I'd like to share this with those who are struggling with hurt, rejection, or feeling out of control.  Now I see why I cannot be a control freak.  Any opportunity to control, totally freaks me out.  I found myself really at a crossroads of facing a very clear reality.  Remembering the facts is not necessarily carrying a grudge, but even in light of facts, my behavior is still my responsibility.  It truly felt like the narrow path had suddenly become more like walking a tightrope or highwire.  

Do you ever want to yield to temptation?  In this particular situation, I felt like I'd put on my "big girl panties" so many times the elastic was shot and at any moment, could fall down and easily give new meaning to turning the other cheek!  I've chatted with a few women friends who speak about having meltdowns.  I know a few men of Elohim who have stated a similar perspective, as in, they'd like to "kick butt and take names . . . and repent later."  I can't judge anyone else, but I know what I felt.  I didn't have the proper Jewish mother perspective, because frankly; guilt trips take too much energy, and my "church lady" perspective is just laughable.  I wanted to be a horse's hind-end, I truly did!  I didn't want to change my desire, I wanted to justify it.

A recent temptation brought horrendous clarity to my situation.  I still remember when Mr. B told me early in this marriage that in many situations he could see that "he was just rubbing my nose in it . . . " It never mattered what "it" was, that was his method of operation.  The strange thing is, he has chosen to NOT stop doing that, and finally about eight years ago, I stopped being close enough to let him rub my nose in most things.  That passage about a dog returning to it's vomit came to mind, making it much easier to just keep a relative distance.  This last year, however; there was a situation that involved proper protocol and called for me to just suck it up and stand within hurting distance, yet without wallowing in the vomit.  It has been clear from the beginning that I am not considered part of the family, but in this situation I needed to be standing by; close enough to be helpful or tromped . . . Mr. B's mother died.

When her approaching death became imminent, the more congenial members of the family were already telling me, they understood that I needed to stay on the farm and they would not be offended by my absence.   After all these years of "undivorce," Mr. B made sure I was aware that I was disinvited to the funeral, for "religious difference."  He did let me know after the funeral that his ex wives had attended with new spouses, and a fellow congregant from my shul had come to pay respects and said to tell me, "hello."  That's still not the real problem that led to my desire to yield to temptation, as that particular town and ambiance is very much like "Peyton Place . . . " My desire to yield involved a strange connection in circumstances that have been made manifest, just in these past couple of months.  Not knowing how many of the circumstances were actually involved . . . I simply chose to be offended.

As the talk of the trust being settled continued after her death a few reminders came to light.  Of course, I was not mentioned in the trust, but the eldest son's wife was . . . I was a big girl, in my big girl panties, and there was no reason to be offended in this regard.  My brother-in-law's wife has been a part of the family for 50 years . . . I respected her place and  knew mine.  My disrespectful daughter, however; was mentioned in the trust as a beneficiary.   Just a couple of months before this trust was drawn up back in 2012, Mr. B's mother allegedly asked him through a phone conversation if he was having an affair with that particular daughter.  We were all in the same room, as he responded to her alleged accusation.  Rather than just saying "No," he responded by causing a most awkward moment, saying, "No, I'm not having an affair with _________ .

My daughter burst out laughing.  Her husband wasn't sure what to think, and two thoughts flew through my mind, well maybe three . . .  First, Dana Carvey's church lady, "Well, isn't that special . . ." and then, 'I think I raised my children better than; to even think such a thing, too bad she didn't.'   That same daughter, after leaving our place in a complete fit of idiocy, called my brother-in-law.  Other than saying she called, he's never offered to discuss the conversation.  Awkward doesn't really begin to describe this situation, now.  I do entertain my third thought, however; from time to time . . .

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago, an email arrives telling Mr. B that it's time to settle the trust and they need my daughter's address.  Then a letter from the Trust Attorney arrived.  That daughter was named specifically in the trust, and he needed to deal directly with her on the matter.    The trust could not be dispersed and settled without my daughter's address and I'm the only one who has her address and new phone number.  To heighten the pressure and make the temptation more enticing, the attorney and the executor wanted this all settled by year's end.  The narrow road now suddenly seemed to be a tightrope over a chasm.

Here's where my prayer got really honest!  I truly wanted to show my hind-end and I told Abba that.  Of course, HE already knew that, anyway.  Y'hshuwah gently reminded me of his own temptation.  I saw it so clearly, as he was offered "power and control" but, I also saw the cost of the deal that was offered in Matthew 4:8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.  Mr. B actually tried to passively put me on the spot last Sunday morning by picking up the phone to call his brother, telling me he needed the address.  I simply looked at him and said, "The mail doesn't run on Sunday, don't push me.  You have to idea how tempting it has been to be uncooperative at this time."

I sent the requested information before it was actually needed and the trust was dispersed per "Mother B's" wishes.  We're not talking "The One Percent" by any means, but I literally, had it within my power to have delayed the settlement of a sizeable estate . . . Had I become the horse's rear-end I first desired to be, what would I have gained?  I already knew where I stood with those involved.  Since I wasn't mentioned, I had nothing to lose . . . except my integrity and blessing of YHWH.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

A Man I Met

In the debate and discussion of The Name, I'd like to share a personal revelation I recently received.  A couple of years ago, a new friend came into my life, through another friend.  All of these relationships began on the internet, through social media.  My friend, Terrie, introduced me to a man called Rev. Spotter.  She had known him for some time.  As internet history and tradition go, back in the day of Windows 98 and before the days of social media, we didn't use our real names, but rather chose monikers that often aligned with what we did.  I was, and still do have the ID emissary scribe.  That is "missionary writer."  Not unlike most internet moniker's this Rev. Spotter's ID clearly identified him.  He is a weatherman/storm chaser, thus: Spotter and he is an ordained minister, hence the "Rev."  Although I recognized him, and "followed" him, I didn't really know him.

As time went on, he became a regular contributor at the Goshen Gazette, through his blog, which carried the "url" with which I was familiar:  Rev Spotter.  As time progressed, we became genuine friends, still online friends, but the friendship grew, and we began to use each other's actual names.  We became prayer partners on occasion and when he'd make a teaching video or his now famous cooking videos, he'd send the link.  As I watched his various videos, I found myself observing different personal traits.  As a cook, also, I was pretty sure I could identify a few of his likes and dislikes, as I watched him prepare his creative recipes.

In his teaching videos, it became clear, very early what he believed and the passion he carries to share the message in which he has been entrusted.  Of course, his gifting behind the camera and his ease in front of the camera made his photos and videos quite enjoyable.  He also articulates well in his blogs.  His articles are a good length and they don't draw undue attention to himself, but rather bring glory to the Father.  It wasn't long in reading his blogs and following his teachings, that I noticed his name.  Why his name wasn't Rev. Spotter, at all!

Now that we have become colleagues and friends in real time, the relationship has changed.  I call him by his actual name, Gerry.  Although he knows I am "emissary scribe" and the "barefoot princess" in blog accounts, he knows me personally as; Eliza, short for Elizabeth.  The other day in speaking to him in person, I used the name, Spotter, and corrected myself with an apology.  Since that incident, I've thought of Y'hshuwah and how most of us met him as "Jesus."

We have the image that Jesus is the Son of the G-d of Israel, died, and rose again.  It wasn't long after I entered covenant with YHWH to follow His Son, I realized, Jesus wasn't actually Messiah's name.  The letter "J" did not exist until the 15th or 16th century, long after our precious Messiah walked this earth.  I'm also guessing the ID, Rev. Spotter did not formally exist until the internet . . .  Of course, I still recognize the references to "Rev. Spotter," but it seems so impersonal now.

I know what Rev. Spotter does and what he stands for on the internet, but I have actual conversations with Gerry and know some of the things that trouble him, as well as things that make him smile.  There are a great many folks who know Rev. Spotter, but friends and family call him, Gerry!

For those who met our Messiah as "Jesus," I'd urge you to consider the name He was given in His language and what His friends and family called Him at the time He walked this earth.  . . . the same, yesterday, today and forever.