Tag Archives: God

Over 2000 Years Ago

Over 2000 Years Ago

Trent and Liz Sutton spoke in church today.  Both gave excellent talks.  Sister Sutton’s talk caused me to go back and reflect on what it must have been like on that first Christmas night over 2000 years ago.

I imagined being an observer based on what I know…

That First Christmas

It was the lambing season, and so shepherds were busy on the plains of Judea west of Jerusalem.  Being early spring, the night chill had them clustered together for warmth.

Not far, in a town in the District of the City of David, a young couple settled for lodging in a manger.  She was about to deliver the Son of God.  Her and her espoused husband, Joseph, had been visited by an angel who prophesied the birth of this child.

As she went in to labor, the night grew dark.  Darker than ever.  The shepherds watching the flocks strained their eyes to keep  watch over their flocks.  This heightened their senses and made them anxiously watch for predators among their sheep.

Lighting the World

As Mary bore down and pushed, the baby’s head crowned.  The baby emerged and the darkness veiling the earth broke as a new star appeared in the heavens, exactly over the little grotto wherein the manger sat.  Light not only filled the heavenly sky, but also that dark covering was filled with the Light of the World.

About the time the shepherds saw the star angels appeared before them.  Because they went from this deep dark sky to seeing these bright beings descend from above, their already heightened vigilance caused them to fear what was happening.

“Fear not!” said the angel, “for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.”

Then, something that has never happened before or since occurred.  And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

The shepherds, all witnessing what just happened discussed among themselves what they should do.  Without haste, the shepherds began their journey towards Bethlehem.  There they found Mary, Joseph and the newborn King.  Because their hearts were filled with joy, finding the Promised Messiah, they went off telling others and inviting them to come and see over 2000 years ago.

copyright 2017 db walton

A Savior is Born

A Type for Us

This is a type for us.  The darkness that night was a lack of light.  That darkness was broken at the birth of the Savior with a light from a new star and heavenly beings.

The world today is full of darkness – a lack of spiritual light.  That darkness will be broken when the Savior returns.

Missionaries

We fed the missionaries tonight.  I made a chicken in blush sauce, spinach and brownies for dessert.

We learned Sister Packard is going home this week.  As a result, she will not be here for our Christmas breakfast.  We’ll miss her.  She’s been a cheerful influence.

Things I Learned and Where I Learned Them

Things I Learned and Where I Learned Them

In elementary school, I learned very little.  I learned to read, write, add, subtract, multiply and divide.  All the best attempts in the world couldn’t get me to understand grammar, history, spelling or anything else.  I did, however, learn to play trumpet and developed a passion for music and band.

Cub Scouts taught me how to do some cool things like make a hidden lock for a drawer or box.

Junior high school taught me to love electronics and algebra.  I had a good algebra teacher, and another teach ran a makeshift repair class.   I continued with band, and I also started to develop a love for photography.

Boy Scouts taught me I can make do with very little.  I can make a sink with a few rocks and a plastic bag.  I also can make a stool using 3 sticks, some rope and some tough fabric. You can make a shelter with tree boughs.  Or, you can cook on a rock or in an orange peel.  Boy Scouts taught me life skills that gave me confidence to do things others don’t dare.

High school taught me people can be cruel at others expense.  (I later learned the cruel kids are the losers of adulthood.)  I learned to love science and follow a scientific method of discovery.

After school jobs taught me you have to be on time, where you are supposed to be when you are supposed to be, and you have to work hard.  If you are willing to do stuff others hate doing, you will always have work.  This applies to pulling weeds and digging holes as well as talking to people you don’t know.

My Mission

Wow… where do I begin.  My mission taught me to be stand up for what you believe in.  It takes effort to get along with people, but they will appreciate you for it.  People who want to argue with you are typically trying to prove a falsehood and therefore, you’re wasting your time.  But most importantly, it taught me that God is real, and that he lives.

When it came to courtship (in my 20s), I learned the hard way.  I learned that if someone belittles you, don’t shrug it off and make excuses that they are only joking or teasing.  Turn and run away.  A tiger doesn’t change its stripes is the lesson I learned.

College

College taught me to focus and concentrate.   This was something I hadn’t been able to do most of my life, but now it was sink or swim.  Good grades were going to make the difference between getting by, and getting ahead.

Advanced mathematics (calculus, trigonometry, number theory, etc.) taught me that all things in nature can be described by a mathematical formula.  Given the formula, you can predict the future.  The hard part is, knowing what the formula is.  This caused me to excel in mathematics, and later computer science.

By hanging around the instructors after hours, I learned you can learn more from them after school than you can during school.  Team up with the smart kids, and hanging with the professor.  Be a nerd.  Your report card will thank you.  When you don’t understand something taught in class, your professor will take all the time in the world to teach you while he downs a beer and feeds on free pizza.  No, he won’t give you answers to the exams, but a $10 pizza and a $5 beer is cheap tutoring by the expert himself.  (Note:  I always let my buddies buy the beer.  I told them I wouldn’t be any part of that, but I made up for it with the pizza.)

Enough for Now

That’s enough for now.  I have to gather my thoughts for the next phase’s learnings.

Women

Women

Elizabethe gave an excellent talk about women in church today.  Several people came up to me and asked me to tell her how good it was.

With her permission, I am sharing it.

Elizabethe’s Talk

When I was a young teenager I wondered if we were male and female in our premortal existence or if that was part of the choice of who we are and who we will be in this earthly life. Then The Family Proclamation came along and answered my question:

“Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.”
——From the church website under the topic of Women

“Women are a necessary part of the plan of happiness, and that plan cannot operate without them. Women participate in the work of salvation, which includes member missionary work, convert retention, activation of less-active members, temple and family history work, teaching the gospel, and caring for the poor and needy. As a disciple of Jesus Christ, every woman in the Church is given the responsibility to know and defend the divine roles of women, which include that of wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, and friend. They stand strong and immovable in faith, in family, and in relief. Women participate in councils that oversee congregational activities throughout the world. They also have, by divine nature, the greater gift and responsibility for home and children and nurturing there and in other settings.”  N Eldon Tanner 1973

From the beginning God has made it clear that woman is very special, and he has also very clearly defined her position, her duties, and her destiny in the divine plan. Paul said that man is the image and glory of God, and that woman is the glory of the man; also that the man is not without the woman, neither the woman without the man in the Lord. You will note that significantly God is mentioned in connection with this great partnership, and we must never forget that one of woman’s greatest privileges, blessings, and opportunities is to be a co-partner with God in bringing his spirit children into the world.

A Conversation with a Client

Some years ago when I was working as a computer professional, one of my clients with whom I had worked for some time expressed his gratitude and appreciation, but asked me how a woman with such obvious intelligence and skill could belong to a religion that was oppressive to women?

I was very surprised and began to educate him a little about life for a woman in the Mormon church. I told him about how we can teach and pray and sing and lead.  The main thing I talked to him about was about how our leaders respect us and how they speak to us. If you listen to our leaders speak to our men you will hear them telling the men to do their duty and to live up their responsibilities and how they should do this. They often encourage the men to be more like the women in their devotion to the gospel. But at the Women’s Conference and when they speak to the women, they tell them, “Don’t be so hard on yourselves,” and “Keep doing the wonderful work you are doing, but don’t lose yourself in comparisons, or in always feeling that you should do more. “

I talked to him about the fact that for men there is no choice, they are to be the providers and protectors for their families. They do not have a righteous choice to NOT work. But women have the choice to work or not work as suits their needs. Women are consistently encouraged to pursue an education. Women are asked to choose wisely and not jeopardize the welfare of their family and children, but we do have a choice.

But what I most appreciate about the Lord’s plan was the freedom and the respect to allow women to be primarily homemakers and nurturers, without the burden of having to also work outside the home and provide for their families. As I went on, his attitude and understanding changed dramatically. He began to understand how much the gospel principles, when practiced according to God’s plan, free us and ennoble us to be all that we can possibly ever be.

My Mother’s Quote

My mother had a lovely quote which unfortunately, I could not find to use in this talk, of one of our church leaders asking the men to whom he was speaking to be more like the women of the church. I quoted that to him and said

Elder John A. Widtse wrote:
“The place of woman in the Church is to walk beside the man, not in front of him nor behind him. In the Church there is full equality between man and woman. The gospel, which is the only concern of the Church, was devised by the Lord for men and women alike” (Improvement Era, Mar. 1942, p. 161).  Spencer W. Kimball – October 1979

Within those great assurances, however, our roles and assignments differ. These are eternal differences—with women being given many tremendous responsibilities of motherhood and sisterhood and men being given the tremendous responsibilities of fatherhood and the priesthood—but the man is not without the woman nor the woman without the man in the Lord. . . .
Some women . . . must work. We understand that. We understand further that as families are raised, the talents God has given you and blessed you with can often be put to effective use in additional service to mankind. Do not, however, make the mistake of being drawn off into secondary tasks which will cause the neglect of your eternal assignments such as giving birth to and rearing the spirit children of our Father in Heaven. We wish you to pursue and to achieve that education, therefore, which will fit you for eternity as well as for full service in mortality. . . .
Quentin L. Cook April 2011

Author and historian Wallace Stegner wrote about the Mormon migration and gathering to the Salt Lake Valley. He did not accept our faith and in many ways was critical; nevertheless, he was impressed with the devotion and heroism of our early Church members, especially the women. He stated, “Their women were incredible.” I echo that sentiment today. Our Latter-day Saint women are incredible!

Divine Qualities

God placed within women divine qualities of strength, virtue, love, and the willingness to sacrifice to raise future generations of His spirit children.

A recent United States study asserts that women of all faiths “believe more fervently in God” and attend more religious services than men do. “By virtually every measure they are more religious.”
. . . . We of course told her about the Relief Society, Young Women, and Primary organizations that are guided by women presidents. We noted that from our earliest history both men and women pray, perform the music, give the sermons, and sing in the choir, even in sacrament meeting, our most sacred meeting.

The recent highly acclaimed book American Grace reported on women in many faiths. It noted that Latter-day Saint women are unique in being overwhelmingly satisfied with their role in Church leadership.

Several years ago I attended a stake conference in Tonga. Sunday morning the three front rows of the chapel were filled with men between 26 and 35 years of age. I assumed they were a men’s choir. But when the business of the conference was conducted, each of these men, 63 in total, stood up as their names were read and were sustained for ordination to the Melchizedek Priesthood. I was both pleased and stunned.

After the session I asked President Mateaki, the stake president, how this miracle had been accomplished. He told me that in a stake council meeting reactivation was being discussed. His stake Relief Society president, Sister Leinata Va’enuku, asked if it would be appropriate for her to say something. As she spoke, the Spirit confirmed to the president that what she was suggesting was true. She explained that there were large numbers of wonderful young men in their late 20s and 30s in their stake who had not served missions. She said many of them knew they had disappointed bishops and priesthood leaders who had strongly encouraged them to serve a mission, and they now felt like second-class members of the Church. She pointed out that these young men were beyond missionary age. She expressed her love and concern for them. She explained that all of the saving ordinances were still available to them and the focus should be on priesthood ordinations and the ordinances of the temple. She noted that while some of these young men were still single, the majority of them had married wonderful women—some active, some inactive, and some not members.

After thorough discussion in the stake council, it was decided that the men of the priesthood and the women of the Relief Society would reach out to rescue these men and their wives, while the bishops spent more of their time with the young men and young women in the wards. Those involved in the rescue focused primarily on preparing them for the priesthood, eternal marriage, and the saving ordinances of the temple. During the next two years, almost all of the 63 men who had been sustained to the Melchizedek Priesthood at the conference I attended were endowed in the temple and had their spouses sealed to them. This account is but one example of how critical our sisters are in the work of salvation in our wards and stakes and how they facilitate revelation, especially in family and Church councils.

No Apologies Needed

First, no woman should ever feel the need to apologize or feel that her contribution is less significant because she is devoting her primary efforts to raising and nurturing children. Nothing could be more significant in our Father in Heaven’s plan.

I especially appreciate this element of Heavenly Father’s plan. After 20 years of raising children in a home where I was pressured to contribute financially, I have a deep and abiding appreciation of the Lord’s plan that frees us as women to be thoroughly committed to our families when they are young and they need us.

I am very grateful for Heavenly Father’s plan and to be His daughter and to know that I am loved and appreciated. I know that His plan is the best way for us to be happy in this life and in the next.

Christmas Eve 2015

Christmas Eve 2015

Here it is, Christmas Eve 2015, and one of my daughters, her husband and two children are with us.  It is nice having them here to celebrate this wonderful holiday.

Jennifer helped me with a church assignment today.  I knew I couldn’t do it by myself, and Elizabethe asked if I was going to cancel.  I told her I was not because they were depending on my, while inside I was praying for help.  Help came in the form of one of my beautiful daughters being here to help.  This Christmas Eve 2015 this has been a wonderful gift.  When you trust in God, he provides.

While Jennifer was helping me, Elizabethe and the grandchildren were decorating the tree.  Elizabethe was worried about the decorations and I suggested to procrastinate until the grandchildren were here because it would be fun to decorate with grandma.  I was right.  We came in and they were having a blast picking out ornaments to place on the tree.

Our evening ended with Jennifer and Spencer preparing a nice dinner and then our reading of Luke Chapter 2.  Everyone opened one gift, and then we retired to wait for Santa to visit.

Busy Tuesdays

Busy Tuesdays

Busy Tuesdays is what I call them.  They have become a day of meetings and an evening for volunteering at the temple.  Yes, busy Tuesdays are here.

I’m not complaining by any means.  I love my Tuesday phone conference with fellow CSM Photographers.  I learn a lot and it is a way for us to learn what photographs are needed.  And, being in the temple is soothing and relaxing — a spiritual recharge.

I had some uneasy feelings before I went to the temple.  I couldn’t figure out why.  Once I got there, I sat down, said a little prayer, and asked if there was some reason for my uneasy feeling.  Ideas soon rushed into my head.  Each one requiring an inquiry to God.  Soon, I had my answer.  It was more simple than I thought.

I returned home from the temple, implemented my prayer’s answer, and felt good.  In fact, once I had an answer to my prayer, the uneasiness left me.

The uneasy feeling had left me asking…

How do I know inspiration verses my own will?

I got an answer to that too.

My own will is what left me feeling uneasy in the first place.  As I pondered what I was about to do, I realized it was my own will.  When I then started thinking, “What would God have me do?”, I realized there were a few possibilities, but when I prayed about the one that stood out the most, the answer was astounding.  It felt good.  It felt right.  And, in this case, it even felt logical.

I’m glad I heeded those feelings.  I have no way of knowing if things would have gone bad if I had not heeded them, but the peace of mind was worth the few minutes alone… praying… seeking God’s will, not mine.

 

Forgot To Mention

Forgot To Mention

There is one thing I forgot to mention yesterday.  It is this, when someone feels shaken by a Church announcement, they should do what we’re told to do.  It is what we tell people who are studying with the missionaries to do.  Pray about it.

And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost. — Moroni 10:4

One friend seems to have forgotten this step to the point where he has abandoned his upbringing. Instead, he has chosen to argue and try to convince other members that the church’s new policy is wrong.  Ironically, the other friend he is arguing with has simply said that if he’s in doubt, he should pray about it.

While the advice to pray about it is going to go unheeded by him, she’s right.  He should pray about it if he really wants to know God’s will.

—–

Elizabethe went to the Stake Relief Society Conference and I went grocery shopping.   I feel like a squirrel stocking up for the winter.  With today’s weather taking a change, it is again starting to feel like winter.  (Yesterday, it felt more like early fall, and the day before like summer.)

My next task was to go take a drive.  In spite of it looking like rain, I just felt the need to get some fresh air.

 

copyright 2015 db walton

Sunflowers

I almost missed this field of sunflowers.  The sky was growing dark and it was starting to rain, but there it was to the right of me.

copyright 2015 db walton

Swamp Grass

The pompoms of this swamp grass looks quite pretty when the light hits it just right.  It’s funny that here it is a weed, but people in California grow this stuff in their yards.

copyright 2015 db walton

New Bishop’s Store House

This is a beautiful sight to see.  This building will serve thousands of people in need.  Right now, it looks like a small movie theater.  In actuality it is a Bishop’s Storehouse.

copyright 2015 db walton

Smith Farm

The light was hitting the old section of Stafford Road just right for this shot.  This one (and the sunflowers) will be available on my www.FineArtbyDB.com web site.

Fourteen Years Ago

Fourteen Years Ago

Fourteen years ago I was on my way to San Jose, California, for an early morning meeting with Cisco.  While driving down I-680 I heard talk on the radio.  The newscasters were confused about what exactly was happening.

As the story developed, newscasters concluded that the U.S.A. might be under attack.  Soon, they were saying that the World Trade Center had been bombed, or that a missile hit it, and finally, that a jet had flown in to it.  It wasn’t long after that they reported the building had collapsed.

I arrived at Cisco’s building, told them I need to return home to be with my family, but also to check on the state of our network.  (I was working for SBC at the time and had responsibility for our TCP/IP network everywhere outside California and Nevada.)  On my way home, I stopped for gas and the station had already run out of regular, and there was a huge line forming.  People were already panicking in California.

I returned home and we turned on the news.  Elizabethe, the children and I were shocked at what we were seeing.  We were under attack, but not by some countries military, but by men using commercial airlines as bombs, and crashing them in to buildings.

Being a loyal employee, I connected to the network and began checking its health.  Fortunately, our routers and switches were all operating as they should.  A few of us met by phone and discussed plans for our infrastructure and what we would do if we started losing connectivity in various locations.

It was a scary day.

In the days that followed, I noticed a large number of people turning to God in prayer, fasting and service.  It was good to see so many people exercising faith in our Creator.

That mood didn’t last long.  Before long people forgot God and began to turn from God.  It’s now fourteen years later, and the persecution against people of faith is greater than I’ve ever seen.

How soon we forget.

I’m reminded of this scripture:

Helaman 11:36

36 And in the eighty and second year they began again to forget the Lord their God. And in the eighty and third year they began to wax strong in iniquity. And in the eighty and fourth year they did not mend their ways.

And later, he writes…

Helaman 12:2

2 Yea, and we may see at the very time when he doth prosper his people, yea, in the increase of their fields, their flocks and their herds, and in gold, and in silver, and in all manner of precious things of every kind and art; sparing their lives, and delivering them out of the hands of their enemies; softening the hearts of their enemies that they should not declare wars against them; yea, and in fine, doing all things for the welfare and happiness of his people; yea, then is the time that they do harden their hearts, and do forget the Lord their God, and do trample under their feet the Holy One—yea, and this because of their ease, and their exceedingly great prosperity.

We have the answer.  It is simple.  Keep God’s commandments and we’ll prosper in the land.  Since 9/11/2001 we have seen great financial crisis, uncounted terrorist activity throughout the world, and Christians and Jews being persecuted in a country that was founded on religious tolerance.

How soon we forget, but it’s not too late to remember.

Who Am I

Who Am I

Who am I to disagree with God?  Who am I to think I know better?

As a Christian I am taught the first and great commandment is to love God with all my heart, might, mind and strength.  The second commandment is like it — to love my neighbor as myself.  All the commandments are based upon these two commandments, including the 10 commandments.

The first three commandments (of the 10) have to do with loving God, and the 4th is a commandment to worship him on the Sabbath day, and to take one day off a week to rest from our labors and to allow others to rest.

The 5th commandment is to live in such a way that you do not bring disgrace to your parents.

The 6th deals with taking life – no murdering, no abortion.

The 7th deals with sexual relationships.  Anciently, it meant no sexual relationships outside of marriage between a man and a woman.  Latter-day prophets uphold this definition.  Sex is to only be between a man and a woman who have been legally married.

The 8th deals with taking what does not belong to you.

The 9th deals with lying.

The 10th deals with wanting something you cannot have or that doesn’t belong to you.

None of that has ever changed, or ever will change.  So, when someone says I need “help to overcome” my religious beliefs, it isn’t going to happen.

A couple of scriptures came to mind while I was listening to the Priesthood Lesson today.  The first scripture was…

Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy. (2 Nephi 2:25)

We’ve been placed here to have joy.  Notice, it doesn’t say “fun” but “joy.”  The difference is fun is entertainment, and momentary.  Joy is a state of mind that is eternal and lasting.

The second scripture was…

So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.  And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth… (Gen. 1:27 & 28)

This made me think that the most joy in life comes through procreation, raising those children, seeing grandchildren born to your offspring, and if we live long enough, seeing great grandchildren born and raised.  Everything else is temporary and simply entertainment, not joy.

We watched this video, and it says it all about joy…

Finally, as a Christian, the Apostle Paul said it best in I Cor. 11:11…

Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord.

I was taught the purpose of this life was to come here to earth (yes, I believe we lived, with God, our Heavenly Father, before we were born.)  Our purpose was to come and gain a body, keep God’s commandments, and to live by faith.  With that purpose, comes the charge to find a mate, marry, and raise children.  That sex is reserved as a two-fold purpose between a man and a woman who have married.  That purpose is to strengthen the man-woman bond in matrimony, and to become partners with God in creating life.  It is then our duty to teach those children, love and nurture them so that they can grow and repeat this process.  Thus, finding joy in our posterity.

I was taught that any other use of those procreative powers is a sin only surpassed by the taking of innocent blood.  That the misuse of those powers brings misery, unhappiness, and that it ruins relationships and destroys families.

I will continue to treat others with kindness even if they live differently, but please, don’t ask me to deny the teachings I’ve been taught since childhood.   While you may choose to deny the existence of a God, I know the God whom I worship and I am trying to live by his laws.

It Had to Rain

It Had to Rain

It had to rain today.  I was thinking I could go for a walk, but no, it had to rain.

There’s a lot of social media fallout from yesterday’s Supreme Court decision.  But what amazes me most is the pure ignorance regarding the commandments.  I’m amazed even more when it comes from active members of the church.  I question… don’t we sit in the same meetings?

Facebook has a “celebrate pride” app they put up to turn people’s avatar in to a gay-pride color scheme, and people are behaving like this is the greatest thing to happen.  While others are busy posting rebuttals to the ruling.  Either way, it is a ruling that is dividing the people.

One Christian man wrote about his feelings.  He said he loves the sinner, as he has been taught, but cannot love sin.  He went on to say he has several gay friends, but he cannot condone homosexuality.  A friend of his posted back asking if he knew that he was, “calling homosexuality a sin.”

Uh, yeah.

The man replied to his friend with a huge list of scriptures.  And, of course, this leads to the never ending barrage of, “well the Bible says…” and they list things like eating pork and killing certain people, and so on and so forth.

I don’t need to justify my religious convictions.  I believe in a God who sent his Son.  His Son established a church lead by prophets and apostles.  They are the only ones authorized to speak for him in our times.  They have very clearly stated that homosexual activities are sinful.  There’s no debate.

Being sinful then, there is no celebration and the only pride precedes the fall.

Traditional Marriage

Traditional marriage… well… let me state that it is disheartening that we even have to preface marriage with the word traditional.  But, traditional marriage is the only form of marriage with any future – both in God’s eyes and in society.

 

Since When

Since When

Since when did it become okay to embrace and celebrate sin?  Yes, I know it has been this way for a while, but it really is dragging society down.

I was looking at many of the posts about the State of the Union address and global warming, and so on, when this thought came to me.  God has never destroyed the world or a people with mans’ doings.  It has always been through God’s own means.

While we’ve been told to care for this earth, I really don’t think we have much of an influence on the weather.  When we look at the great flood, Sodom and Gomorrah, Jericho, etc., we see that none of those were destruction by man.  They were all sent by God.

This got me thinking further…

I think we have less to fear about WWIII than we do the wrath of God for disobedience to his commandments.   Let’s face it, if God wanted, he could send an earthquake anywhere in the world and churn the earth at that location such that few would survive.

Reading the bible, the two big destructions we read about are the great flood and Sodom and Gomorrah.  Both came as a result of men refusing to keep God’s laws – specifically his law on chastity.  I know it has been a problem for a long time, but it has only got worse.  Just watch a TV show from the 60s, and then watch one from today.  Pay attention to family, marriage and intimacy as it is portrayed on TV.  It’s pretty sad that we’ve got this corrupt.