Archive for January, 2006

Theistic Evolution

Sunday, January 29th, 2006

Recently in Sunday School the lesson topic was the Creation. The science of it was brought up, and I am still mulling over in my mind what I could have said better than what I did. I am frustrated with myself for not having prepared better for it. Not that I really saw it coming, but I should have. I knew that the Creation lesson was coming up, but I had been thinking I would be in the nursery with my son. Sione stayed in the nursery instead. I even had my oldest daughter start asking me questions about it in the week before, but had not pursued it more than a discussion of what I remembered off the top of my head. I told her we would learn more later (we were in the car at the time) and I was not being that urgent in my quest, since she had seemed mildly interested. I was therefore not as prepared as I feel I should have been for the discussion that ensued in the class. It was not contentious, in my opinion, it is just frustrating to me to see how many people seem to be so easily swayed by “the philosophies of men” in this subject.

I have not studied this subject in over a year, and so the information was not as fresh in my mind as I wish it would have been. However I just noticed that I had saved a file on evolution and I opened it to find an e-mail I wrote when I was discussing this very topic when I had been studying this more in depth. Here is most of what I wrote. I left out irrelevant comments. Some of this I had remembered and used, some I wish I had remembered.

First of all I want to define theistic evolution for those who may not know what it means. Theistic Evolution is the belief that God used evolution to create the world.

We read in Genesis 1:24 “And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind and it was so.” and in Moses 2:24 “And I, God said: Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping things, and beast of the earth after their kind, and it was so.” From these it is clear that from the beginning there has always been “like beget like” going on.

Regarding Natural Selection……Hmmmmmm. To me saying that Heavenly Father uses natural selection is like saying that Heavenly Father takes away our agency to choose who we will marry and procreate with. We have that choice, always. A zebra has always given birth to a zebra. Mosquitoes have always laid eggs for more mosquitoes. An apple tree has always produced apple trees. Tomato plants have always produced more tomato plants.

President John Taylor wrote “The animal and vegetable creations are governed by certain laws, and are composed of certain elements peculiar to themselves. This applies to the man, to the beast, fowls, fish and creeping things, to the insects and to all animated nature; each one possessing its own distinctive features, each requiring a specific sustenance, each having an organism and faculties governed by prescribed laws to perpetuate its own kind. So accurate is the formation of the various living creatures that an intelligent student of nature can tell by any particular bone of the skeleton on an animal to what class or order it belongs.
“These principles do not change, as represented by evolutionists of the Darwinian school, but the primitive organisms of all living beings exist in the same form as when they first received their impress from their Maker.”

In 1 Cor. 15:38-39 Peter states “But God giveth it a body as it hath pleased him, and to every seed his own body. All flesh is not the same flesh: but there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of beasts, and another of fishes, and another of birds.” I read this and think Hmmmmmmmmm, why would He go through the trouble of creating something as less than what He wanted it to be? He created it and said it was good. He created it perfectly, He has no reason to use any process to physically change an entire species of anything.

If we are going to look at whether the world is progressing or regressing in its natural state, I would have to say it must be regressing. After all this world, when it was first created, existed in a paradisiacal or a terrestrial state. We are not in this state now, but the earth will be “renewed” and receive its paradisiacal glory. The earth, too was created in a perfect state. There were no weeds, or thorns until after the fall, according to Moses 4:24. As the weeds and thorns also multiply and replenish the earth, it only makes sense that there are many more of the less desirable aspects of things now, than in the beginning. Seeing as there has not been any zero population meetings going on among the plant world, that is. :)

In “Man: His Origin and Destiny” Orson Pratt wrote “Man, when he was first placed upon this earth, was an immortal being, capable of eternal endurance; his flesh and bones, as well as his spirit, were immortal and eternal in their nature; and it was just so with all the inferior creation – the lion, the leopard, the kid and the cow; it was so with the feathered tribes of creation, as well as those that swim in the vast ocean waters; all were immortal and eternal in their nature; and the earth itself, as a living being, was immortal and eternal in its nature…. The earth was so constructed that it was capable of existing as a living being to all eternity, with all the swarms of animals, fowls, and fishes that were first placed upon the face thereof…. If there had been no sin, our father Adam would at this day have been in the Garden of Eden, as bright and as blooming, as fresh and as fair, as ever, together with his lovely consort Eve, dwelling in all the beauty of youth.”

2 Nephi 2:22-26 tells us that Lehi said “If Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained forever, and had no end. And they would have had no children; wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence, having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin. But behold, all things have been done in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things. Adam fell that men might be; and men are that they might have joy. And the Messiah cometh in the fullness of time, that he may redeem the children of men from the fall.”

In Moses 5:11 Eve is quoted as saying “Were it not for our transgression we never should have had seed, and never should have known good and evil, and the joy of our redemption, and the eternal life which God giveth unto all the obedient.”

Before the fall, there was perfection. There was no death, no illness, nothing to improve upon. This world, and all that live on it, are naturally having more illnesses, etc. Yes, we are “finding” cures for disease. In truth Heavenly Father is revealing them, of course. However more spring up continually.

Our Heavenly Father is a God of order. “All things testify of Christ.” All true science will point back to God. We should judge all things by the scriptures, words of the prophets, and ultimately the Spirit. The world would have us believe that to judge all things by those points first would be naive, and likely to keep us in ignorance. I propose that it is exactly the opposite. Because all true knowledge comes from God. and as we follow the scriptures, His prophets, and the Spirit, we will have more knowledge revealed to us. He shows us this is the case over and over again in the scriptures. From the Brother of Jared, Moses, Lehi, Nephi, to Joseph Smith. When we go to Him for knowledge and truth, He will teach us. We have no need to seriously consider the philosophies of the world, when it is mixed with scripture. Simply because we need not have that lesser, finite knowledge added in.

Please Welcome Ginger!

Saturday, January 28th, 2006

My sweet sister Ginger has joined us in the blogging world. Go ahead and check her out. :)

Good Article

Friday, January 27th, 2006

I loved this article. I don’t have to deal with really nasty comments about the size of my family, or how many I want (yet, knock on wood). I do have comments made, but none of them have been hostile or condemning. More incredulous and amazed that anyone would even want to have more than 3 or 4 at the most. Sometimes I feel selfish for wanting a large family because of how much joy I receive in my role as wife and mother. I know it sounds a little silly, but I love it so much I start to think it must be too much. Whenever I do start to have those feelings, however, a peaceful feeling steals into my heart and I hear in my mind the Lord’s counsel to multiply and replenish the earth. That men (and women) are that they might have joy. That wickedness never was happiness (let alone joy). That I am a daughter of God, and if I (an imperfect being) would want my children to be happy, then it makes sense that our perfect Heavenly Father would want at least that for His children as well. As I hear these messages my guilt melts into gratitude for the blessings I have received. I know I do not deserve all that He blesses me with, but my heart wants to burst with the joy I have felt so often as a result of these blessings. I love my Savior, and I have a testimony that He loves each of us. He has provided a way for us to have eternal joy. He made it possible because he loves us, and He wants us to succeed and live with Him for eternity. I know that as we follow the path He wants us to we will find happiness and joy beyond what we could even imagine possible; beyond what we even have hopes for ourselves. He loves us more than we love ourselves.

Current Reading List

Wednesday, January 25th, 2006

The books I am currently in the middle of with my children are:

Deuteronomy from the Old Testament
Helaman from the Book of Mormon
Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates
The Legend of Holly Claus
will soon be starting Ralph S Mouse

The books I am currently in the middle of myself are:

1st Nephi from the Book of Mormon
Bonds That Make Us Free
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
Soon to start Jane Eyre (Love this one) and Persuasion. I also need to start the Samantha series from American Girls soon.

I was reading War and Peace, but I decided that I needed to prioritize my reading, and it lost the list for the deadline it was under (for a book club). I do really want to read this book, but right now it just isn’t happening. Sadly.

I’ve been tagged by Tamra

Monday, January 23rd, 2006

Four jobs you have had in your life?

Nanny in Connecticut
Cook level one at the Roof Restaurant
Receptionist at a Law office
Data Entry/Editing for a Survey company

Four movies you would watch over and over:

Chronicles of Narnia
The Lord of the Rings
You’ve Got Mail
Old Musicals (Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Man of La Mancha, Singin’ in the Rain, My Fair Lady, etc.)

Four places you’ve lived:

West Valley City, UT
Greenwich, CT
Sandy, UT
Herriman, UT

Four TV shows you love to watch:

CSI (all of them)
Extreme Home Makeover
American Idol (blush)

Four websites I visit daily:

My e-mail
My Blog
My linked blogs
Ivillage July 2006 Expecting club

Four of my favorite foods:

My husbands shishkabobs (Mmmmmmmmmm)
Chop Suey (the way my brother-in-law makes it)
Grilled pineapple
The Tour of Italy at the Olive Garden

Four places I would rather be right now:

On a date with my husband
Reading to my kids while we cuddle
Curled up on a chair with a book
At the Bookstore with some $$ to spend :)

Four bloggers I am tagging:

Truly Scrumptious


Monday, January 16th, 2006

I am hunting and prowling the internet for new additions I want to make to my library of curriculum for our homeschool. I am getting pretty excited about it, too. I have realized lately that I am sorely lacking in some areas, and I am looking forward to fixing that. I started by going to Latter Day Family Resources and looking around at their curriculum before I decided to just ask them to send me a catalog. A woman I highly admire talked about what a fun thing it is to give a catalog to your child and tell them you are going to spend $30 in that catalog for them, and let them pick out what they want that will equal that amount. I think I might just try that with my kids. How fun would that be for them?!?! I would love it if someone did that for me!

To raise money for this I am doing some data entry over at my sister-in-law’s home for Sione’s work. My children miss playing with their cousins, and they are loving the idea of being able to play over there. The only hang up so far has been actually getting over there to work. *sigh* I have been having a hard time getting out of bed in the mornings, and I need to just will myself into not being tired anymore. Does that work? I’ll have to give it a try.

15 1/2 weeks

Saturday, January 14th, 2006

Well, the morning sickness is easing a bit now. I am so grateful that it seems to almost be gone. I am also very grateful because this pregnancy has been my easiest so far in the morning sickness department. Heavenly Father truly blesses us all of the time.

My belly has been growing bigger and bigger all of the time. I am definitely out of my zip up pants and have relegated myself to using maternity clothes for a few weeks now. I feel kind of funny with how early I started wearing my maternity clothes. I only started using them because I needed to, but I guess I can’t help thinking I was pulling them out too early.

No need to worry about twins, though. I went in for my first midwife appointment and I was measuring 16cm for 14 weeks. Nothing strange. We did hear the heartbeat and she said it was about 160. It was kind of hard to find at first because the baby was hiding behind my tummy pulse. I weighed in at 125, so I have officially gained 5lbs during my first trimester. Wow! I normally lose, or maintain at best. I wonder what this means I have in store for me in regards to how big I will get with this one. I have hardly had any sugar or fat since that would make me sick, so it hasn’t been because I’m snarfing bad stuff. The biggest I got with any of my babes was with Collin. He was also my biggest babe at 8lbs 14oz. There’s nothing for it but to wait and see, I guess. :) Not that I’m really worried, just curious. My biggest prayer right now is another birth like Tevita’s. I would love to have another one like that……only let’s make it a waterbirth this time around.

New Liberty Girls Semester

Thursday, January 12th, 2006

Well, we had our first meeting for our 2006 Spring Liberty Girls yesterday. It turned out pretty well, I think. We are focusing on the 1860’s and the Civil War, and our readings are the Addy series from American Girls. Reading this series and thinking about what it meant to be a slave, what it still means in some parts of the world, is sobering to say the least. I am glad that we are doing this semester after we did the American Revolution semester. We are discussing the continued fight for freedom, and how it wasn’t settled for everyone in one war. The true American Ideal of equality for all people was only just beginning then. We are memorizing the Gettysburg address for our Family Night presentation. I love that speech. I am touched every time that I read it. Yesterday we went through and discussed all of the big words and explained what all of the sentences meant, so the girls will know what we are reciting. We are also going to be doing a little skit about the underground railroad. I think it will be a neat night.

My hardest thing to deal with right now is that Julie wants to be a part of everything. Liberty Girls is for girls ages 6-9. Once a girl turns 10 she ‘graduates’ to Young American Stateswomen Association for girls ages 10-13. She loves it in this program, but becuase she is here during Liberty Girls she wants to participate in this as well. For some things this isn’t a big deal, but for discussions she always wants to answer every question (which I love about her). This is hard because she won’t stop trying to answer even though I tell her over and over again that we are talking with the girls in the group, and she needs to let them answer. Then she gets upset if I ask her to help take care of Tevita (which we have always discussed would be her job during these times), because it pulls her away from the group. We have one opening in the group right now, and she asks me why she can’t fill that spot until someone else comes along. I have tried explaining to her that anything she sees us doing that she wants to do, we can get the supplies for on our own and do them just as our family, or even just her. That just doesn’t seem to appease her at all. It’s not the answer she wants. *sigh* I love that she loves so many things, and likes to be involved in everything she sees. I think that if she can learn to be patient and just pick a few things at a time this will be a wonderful gift for her. Right now I am just trying to teach her that she really can’t do everything that she wants to do all of the time. lol, You would think my bad example of being so stressed from overcommitting would show her how true that is!

Welcome 2006!

Monday, January 2nd, 2006

Happy New Year, all around! I have been thinking back over the past year and contemplating the choices I have made. Some I know were good, some weren’t good, some I am still mulling over to decide. It gives me some perspective as I look forward to the coming year. What are my hopes for 2006? Which ones are realistic? One thing I do know is that if I seek to keep the Lord in on the decision making I will be happier in the long run.
There seems to be many choices in front of my family this year. I know I need to make some changes to our homeschool schedule/management, for one thing. I also know that I need to decide on what physical groups/lessons my children will participate in this year. That option is wide open now that dance is done. I also need to make sure that I don’t overcommit again. That caused so much grief this year. Keep It Simple needs to be my motto this year!