Provocateur

silhouette photo of person standing in neon lit hallway

So, I’m watching a Jordan Peterson interview. My family knows I enjoy watching Peterson interviews because…

I can’t put a finger on why exactly but it has to do with the way he tries to put the things he’s learned into words others can understand.

That doesn’t usually mean others appreciate what they understand. After they understand it they often become in denial. This is why it’s so interesting. For instance, there is a theory that there isn’t a difference between males and females it is only the way they are taught to behave by society.

I am a poor mother of seven children and I can tell you several things about that theory, but the main thing is it’s hogwash. Peterson in his interview cites that there had been three separate studies done ‘recently’ (I don’t know the date of the video) that showed ‘most’ males took interest in things and most females were most interested in people. Neither preference is good or bad. It isn’t like one prefers working and the other prefers stealing.

Therefore, in consequence, he said it is no wonder when it comes to job choices more males are engineers (a thing choice) and more females choose a people job such as nursing. He wasn’t saying all males or all females because of course there are exceptions to the rule.

But here’s where the provocateur comes in. Another person on the stage said no, she believed you could teach them to be otherwise. He said, well, like it or not the three separate studies showed differently (it wasn’t a taught thing?). In other words, you can believe what you want but the truth is the truth.

He is also very emphatic about personal responsibility. Personal responsibility leads over into every facet of our lives. In the same interview, the subject of divorce came up. Children, of course, are the ones most devastated by divorce. Children thrive in a stable, two-parent, traditional, marriage.

He stated that if you advocate for children and their welfare you would tell people to not divorce for the children’s sake. Someone asked him if you wait until it’s all right for the children, at what age would they be? He said, oh, when they’re about forty. (Now, I understood that to mean when the children are about forty).

I enjoy these partially because he’s a finger in the eye to the ‘experts’. The experts have their agenda and they attempt to line up the facts to support that agenda. And the facts don’t usually line up with their agenda. Dr. Peterson tries to be honest and uses the data to see what it supports. I don’t know that I agree with everything he says, but I haven’t knowledge of everything he espouses.

I do know that the truth is truth. God has given us the truth, and we can know the truth.

John 8:

31  Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;

32  And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

33  They answered him, We be Abraham’s seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free?

34  Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.

35  And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever.

36  If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.

woman carrying child while standing near trees at daytime

Honor Mother

Many of us have heard the phrase, ‘the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world’. A popular poem in the 1800s, it referred to mothers and motherhood and the idea that the nurturing influence of mothers on their children during childhood influenced the world through adulthood. It is a foundational principle in both the Old and New Testaments to “Honor thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.” (Ephesians 6:2-3)

Honor Due Mothers

woman carrying child while standing near trees at daytime, a loving mother

Honor—a word that carries all sorts of connotations. It is similar to the word ‘virtue’, it is seen in action. Recently, I watched a show in which there was a scene where an adopted daughter didn’t get what she wanted in an exchange between her and a parent. The young girl stormed out of the room when the parent was speaking to her.

In my day as a child, when an elder, much more when a parent was speaking to you, you listened. Granted she was an adopted child, but it should have been a learning moment.

In her case, after she had been in her room long enough to cool down the parent should have gone quietly in to speak with her. The conversation would go something like, “I can understand you are not happy and you would like—or you feel like such and such—but slamming out of the room and/or running off is not the way we handle things nor is it the way to solve problems…”

Honorable Mothers Needed

Just as we need honorable fathers, we need honorable mothers. Families are the foundation on which our nation is built. Good families equal good homes and that makes a good country.

Dependable mothers are as essential as dependable fathers and are the second half of the unit. In real life, there are times when a home will find itself with only one parent because of a catastrophe, but that should not happen often. With the rise of feminism, one of the goals was to free women from the bondage of marriage, except…

Honored Mothers Differ

Feminism isn’t about being feminine, it’s about being like men…and not even good men. It hasn’t worked well for women to be ‘loosed’ from marriage. Marriage isn’t bondage for women it is a safety net. In reality, marriage is made in heaven. When the scriptures call women ‘the weaker vessel’ it doesn’t mean an inferior vessel. It refers to a more delicate, more valuable vessel. So, what happened is instead of being treated as a valuable person women traded that in to be treated like one of the guys. Someone to be used then discarded.

There is nothing honorable, nor honest for men or women in that situation, and nothing dependable for men, women, or children. A society will not thrive nor flourish or survive in an immoral state of affairs. A few years back there was a saying, “If you like what you see put a ring on it”.

Shallow—our lives are shallow. When people ask “Why don’t marriages last today like they used to?” The problem is character counts and we’re short on character. Honor, virtue, dependable, go with the idea of ‘a promise made is a promise kept’. Wives are half of the marriage unit, and both halves need to be of good character. Even as a person of faith I fall, I rise, and I fall again. Respectful, Dependable, Moral, Honor Mother.

“Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise),” (Ephesians 6:2 ESV) https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ephesians+6%3A2&version=ESV

Honor Fathers

brown wooden card on white table

In June we have a Sunday set aside to honor fathers. Honorable fathers are men of good character and are a vital necessity for a healthy society. Honoring fathers is an important brick in the family which is foundational to any society. Fathers are here to defend, provide, and cherish their wives and children.

Honor Fathers Especially –

Respectable Fathers – A Vital Necessity

History and statistics show us that one of the major factors in the break down of our society is homes without fathers. It is especially hitting black families a stunning blow. But any home without a father suffers. Husbands and wives, men and women, are both necessary in the family.

The pattern for fathering is passed from one generation to the next. A sad reality is since mothers and fathers both have gone into the workforce, too many children are raising themselves.

Dependable Fathers – Half of A United Unit

It is a crime against society to drive a wedge between men and women when the two genders need to unite. Our society and our children depend on good homes. A single parent home shouldn’t be a common happening.

Women need to acknowledge that no one can do it all. We are told we can have a career, be a mother, and juggle all the items flying through the air, and we don’t need a husband. But the truth is, we just cannot do it by ourselves. We honor fathers as part of our recognition of that fact.

Moral Fathers – Scriptural Basic

Even if we could keep everything flying that still isn’t the way God meant for homes to operate. God planned for families to have a father and a mother.

As we are told in scriptures, fathers are to raise their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. Those that do become worthy of their children’s obedience when God says “Honor fathers”.

Why Honor Fathers?

It is important to honor men. The traits that make men manly are the ones that make them good fathers. Our society is in dire need of men of good character to step up and be honorable fathers. Honor fathers to encourage a healthy society.

“Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.” (Ephesians 6:2-4 KJV)

On the Path

Where are you on the path of life? Back in the ’60s, there was a Diana Ross song called “Do You Know Where You’re Going to?” The next question was ‘do you like the things life is showing you?’

Comfortable Life

The thing is, too often folks get so used to doing the same old things, living the same old ways that even though their life may be painful it’s what they know.

They may be in a bad relationship but something is better than nothing. Or, often in the middle of your own life, you can’t manage to step back and analyze what the situation is, and find a better solution.


In watching a show lately, there is a husband and wife heading for divorce. They’re both yammering at each other about their problems. The audience could probably solve the problem, but doubtfully the couple ever will.

Life Uncentered

There’s enough selfishness to go around, for one thing, and we are living in an age where people have lost their center. In one scene the adopted daughter makes the statement about ‘people promise—but they don’t keep their promises’.

We know there are times when fate intervenes and although a person has the intention of keeping a promise they are hindered, but there are also quite a few times when a promise isn’t valued. 

I’m reminded of the times in the scriptures when a promise is made under false pretenses, such as the Gibeonites and the Israelites. Even though the Israelites should have asked counsel of God they went ahead and made a covenant without such counsel.

Yes, they were deceived by appearances. Yet, God still held them accountable to the covenant they had been tricked into making. The people were not happy with their leaders, but that was not a consideration.

A Properly Centered Life

As the Charlie Brown cartoon, where Lucy tells Charlie “We would all be happier if we listened to God”. That’s where our center should come from.

Doing the right thing isn’t always easy and doesn’t always make us feel great. It is, however, always the right thing to do.
“But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.” 
(1 Samuel 16:7 KJV)

To Do Or Not To Do

Over a year ago I had a quilt all done except the binding. I need to find some more binding and finish that quilt. As some people know I’ve had a Wix site for several previous years. Here is a link to my quilt project in case anyone would like to view that. https://deborawephraim.wixsite.com/donevywestphal/single-post/2019/06/18/Repost-on-Quilts

Besides the quilt, I’ve been thinking about watching and following a Bob Ross painting video. I believe have everything I need to do the job it just needs set up. I haven’t really painted much and when I first began painting Bob Ross was probably in Alaska just learning to paint as well. My children used to watch his show every Saturday afternoon. It’s just fascinating how he takes a flat surface and turns it into a work of art. Not to mention his wonderful personality, and Peapod the Pocket Squirrel.

I’ve wanted to call my Merle Norman store and find out if they can mail an order to me. They have done that in the past. And perhaps contact a piano tuner to work on tuning and repairing our piano. I do have a list of things besides working to get my book published by June first. It’s count down time for that as well.

***

This morning after Worship Services were over several of the children were outside playing. Suddenly, our youngest granddaughter is heard wailing, and as the old-timers called it ‘pitching a fit’. I looked at my daughter and I said, “I don’t know where she got her temper, I still have all of mine.”

Of course, we laughed…people with tempers can be legendary. Not that I would claim legendary status, but a temper can make a person look courageous or more often than not, look like an idiot. My daughter went through the fit scene with her oldest child in the early years, and asked me, “Mom, do you think we ever look like that to God?” “Yes, I do, child,” I said with a smile.

That’s when my sister’s words come back to me. ‘I remember my mother, and I come down off of my high horse real fast.’ Children are a link to the past and the future. They are also a glimpse from us as child into the mind of God.

(Genesis 44:33)  “Now therefore, I pray thee, let thy servant abide instead of the lad a bondman to my lord; and let the lad go up with his brethren.
(Gen 44:34)  For how shall I go up to my father, and the lad be not with me? lest peradventure I see the evil that shall come on my father.”