You’ve Already Been Given a Mansion — Will You Believe it and Move in?

Disclaimer: This post has NOTHING to do with politics.

Last night I dreamed that President Trump was my father-in-law and was coming to visit. I frantically tried to fix up our little shack of a house that we bought to be our office. I went to the store, only 10 minutes before closing time, and was frantically buying a bed, a side table, curtains, etc. When I got home with the goods, I realized it was pointless to set all of that stuff up because we hadn’t even laid the floor yet!

But he never came. What he did was send us a plane ticket to New York. Once we were there, Ivana informed me that he had given us their luxury high-rise apartment — just flat out given it to us. I was in such a state of overwhelm that I started crying. She seemed puzzled that I would be surprised by this. After all, he was my husband’s father — of course he would want to take care of us in style! Nothing was required of us. All we had to do was accept the gift.

The next thing I was doing was opening all the windows and looking out at the beautiful view. I wanted to take photos for Facebook and Instagram to let everyone know what I had been given. At one point, I left the building and was stopped by the receptionist when I reentered. I thought, “Oh no, she knows I am an imposter!” but all she wanted to let me know was that I was invited to a family meeting.

Barron was there. He reminds me so much of Sage with his looks of sensory overwhelm. Demons were harrassing him, but I sang and many of them left. Even though he saw himself as a dark person (due to the demonic influence), he still lived in the mansion, and was taken care of. He was a child of his father. This part of the dream is unimaginably comforting to me, as I believe it is God’s way of saying that Sage is in His hands and is His child no matter who he currently thinks he is. Demons like to harrass the Father’s children, unfortunately.

Why Trump? In the parables of Jesus, so often the “King” was used to represent God. Trump, for all practical purposes, is the current king, and makes sense for this story, especially since he owns a mansion way up high and has a son who reminds me of my own. :)

So there is this mansion. Our Father has given it to us. It is so hard to believe that he would give us a gift of such majesty that we continue to try to fix up our shacks, trying to make ourselves acceptable to Him. But he already loves us so much. Once we realize that, we will sell all of our little shacks and move into the treasure that we have found.

War Begins in the Minds of Men

You have heard that it was said, “You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? “Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

If I believe that Jesus actually said the words above, and believe that he meant them and that He was telling the truth, then I have some things to think about. We all do,actually.

love your enemiesAnyone who knows me remotely well knows that I am anti-war. I believe it is a complete hypocrisy that people call the United States a Christian country while we are warmongering gun idolators. In my mind, a truly Christian country would have extended an olive branch after 911, seeking reconciliation. To those who argue that we had to “defend ourselves,” what we did was not self defense, it was retaliation and political opportunism. Self defense is more along the lines of the increased airport security we implemented. Anyway, that is beside the point when your defense is the Most High who created the amazing universe.

But I really shouldn’t be worried about what the nation or, in fact, what anyone else is doing. The focus right now needs to be getting the darn log out of my own eye.

What I am concerned with is digging the roots of bitterness and hatred out of my own heart. Change starts with me, right? In ourselves, in our families. Then our communities, then our nation, and then the world.

Who among us doesn’t harbor animosity toward another person? You know, the kind where if you read on Facebook that they got a bad haircut or gained 50 pounds, you wouldn’t be exactly sorry. Who hasn’t sat ruminating about the unkind words another person has said to them? Or talked about how messed up another person’s attitude and behavior is?

The thing is, we’re not supposed to do that.

At all. I don’t see any exceptions. Jesus never says, “Love your enemy except when they talk trash about you.” He doesn’t even provide an exception for when the enemy murders your entire family. Or invades your nation. Nope. He says, “Be perfect.”

It’s all well and good for us to talk about the atrocities that ISIS is committing, for example. Once again, someone has provided a convenient way for us to get the focus off of ourselves and onto a “bigger” sinner. We don’t get to do that, though. Jesus says, Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.” Not just ISIS. He means me when I think hateful thoughts about someone who hurt my feelings or behaves in a manner that I don’t agree with.

Jesus knows the nature of reality. In the spiritual world, there is little (if any?) difference between murdering someone physically and murdering them in your spirit with your thoughts and words. Our entire universe is constructed of energy, and thoughts and words have their own energy. They are REAL. We must not hate or entertain the demons of hate.

We should pray for ISIS. We should say a quick prayer for the harried person who cut us off in traffic. For the friend who betrayed us. For the parent who didn’t meet our needs. For the husband who cheated. Everyone.

If we truly believe in prayer, how could we doubt for even one second that it’s more effective than bombs or any of the other fallout from hatred?

Loving Enemies

love your enemies

The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:4-5

This sounds like a nice enough Bible verse, right? Not really. If we fully recognize what Paul is saying here, and put it into practice, it will be one of the most difficult things we ever do.

If you have a stronghold in your life, you are enslaved to whatever it is that has power over you. For many people, the strongholds are things like anger and a desire for revenge. I think these feelings reside in every human soul. It is normal to have them, but once we decide to follow Jesus, it’s time to take out these strongmen and crush them.

I was reading and wish so very much that people would just GET IT. Whenever someone suggests that we should love our enemies to the point of embracing non-violence, you always get people coming out of the woodwork who say things like, “What if someone breaks into your house and tries to kill your child?”

I can understand this. Here’s the thing, though. First of all, the Holy Spirit is immensely powerful and can give us the wisdom in that moment to fix the situation. I love how Antoinette Huff handled this school shooter. Second, if the person DID kill your family, remember that Jesus destroyed death:

…it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. 2 Timothy 1:10

In other words, Jesus put the lie to death. We are immortal souls! God has the whole thing under control. No worries.

Think of life as a dream you’re having. So what if you or someone else wakes up a little bit before you had set your alarm clock to go off? Not that big of a deal, really. I know this sounds flippant, but keep in mind that I am not 100 percent certain that my older son is alive. This knowledge keeps me SANE.

So we don’t have to hate or kill our enemies and continue the cycle that the satan would like to see perpetuated. I refuse to participate.

Of course, it’s easy to sit here and talk about unlikely circumstances or wars that I am at a personal distance from. It’s another thing altogether to talk about REAL enemies — the people in our everyday lives who slander us, provoke us and do other things that make us feel like a spiritual knife is entering our heart. Our normal instinct is to STRIKE BACK, or at the very least, engage in a good complaining session about the person.

But Paul says to take captive EVERY THOUGHT and bring it into obedience to Christ. So that means that if I choose to complain to my husband about someone who has hurt my feelings, denigrating them, that I am NOT being obedient to Christ. Yikes.

So what to do? I refuse to give myself a pass on the grounds that I am “only human” because I’m really trying to transcend my current level of consciousness.

The way that I take such thoughts captive is to implement Jesus’ command in Matthew 5:44, which says to “pray for those who persecute you.” So, whenever I am tormented by a yukky thought about another person, the only thing to do really is to pray for them. And boy do I not want to do that. But you know what? When I force myself to do so, I feel a wonderful peace. And if the thoughts return the next day, I do it again!

I don’t pray that the person will see the error of their ways or anything like that. What I pray is that the person will be most richly blessed and experience God’s joy, peace and love in their lives. In other words, what I want for myself. And you know what? I get what I pray as if I had prayed those words for me rather than the person I have struggled with!

This stuff is really really hard. And it’s not fun to do. And I don’t do it as much as I should. Some thoughts manage to get through in spite of my efforts to kick them back into the darkness. But it’s a journey that I want to undertake. I hate the darkness and don’t want any part of it, really.

The knowledge of God is that we are one, and how we treat our brothers and sisters is how we treat ourselves. I want NOTHING to come between me and this knowledge.

The Two Words of the Bible You MUST Believe

God is our fatherI’m not going to mince words here — this is ridiculously simple. Jesus gives us the key to recognizing not only who WE are, but who OTHERS are as well in the Lord’s Prayer. Without further ado, the two words that will transform your world are…

OUR FATHER.

When you believe this — and I don’t mean intellectually, but from your HEART — that the supreme creator of the universe is your genetic FATHER… Well, then.

You are a SON or DAUGHTER of God. Period.

Not only that, but everyone else is ALSO a son or daughter of God.

Whoa.

So how would that change how we treat ourselves and others (love our neighbor as ourselves)? I have to say, if we aren’t treating EVERY SINGLE PERSON in our lives with love borne of the recognition that we are borne of love itself and are interacting with the sons and daughters of love, then we don’t really get it. Not yet.

It can be difficult to understand. Our culture puts up blinders that obscure reality. We’re told that we are evil, and indeed, there are impulses that we must fight that certainly are. But who we are at the core? Sons and daughters.

Not servants, not slaves, not sinners. Sons and daughters.

If you truly believe in your heart that you are a genuine SON or DAUGHTER of the Most High, then you will love yourself. You will be free to express your true self, the opinions of others be damned.

You will find it impossible to judge. After all, some of the other sons and daughters might not have seen their birth certificate yet, but that doesn’t change who they ARE. Our only role is to shine the light for our literal brothers and sisters so that they know their true identity. And how better to do this than by treating them as sons and daughters of the most amazing royalty?

Do we treat everyone in our lives as the royalty that they are?

If not, why not? Could it be that we haven’t truly internalized the truth of our lineage?

Atheists in the Kingdom of Heaven: A Retelling of the Good Samaritan

hitchhikderAnd behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” And he said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.” But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

If Jesus told the story of the good Samaritan today, I imagine it would go somewhat like this:

Jesus replied, “A man was hitchhiking from Houston to Nacogdoches, and got picked up by some drunk country boys who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead by the side of the road. Now by chance a pastor was going down that road, and when he saw him he thought about stopping, but realized he would be late to his church council meeting. So he drove on. So likewise an elder of the church, who worried that the guy would bleed on his upholstery and find out where he lived, possibly jeopardizing the safety of his family. So he, too, passed by. But an atheist, as he journeyed from a Comic Con convention, pulled up beside him and had compassion. He went to him and bound up his wounds, not worrying about possible lawsuits for unauthorized medical care. Then he covered him with his jacket and called an ambulance. He drove behind the ambulance so he could advocate for the likely-uninsured man once he arrived at the hospital. The next day he pulled out his checkbook and paid what he could for the man’s care, and then offered to get the guy a hotel room for a few days so he could recuperate. Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the unfortunate hitchhiker?” He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.”

In those days, Samaritans were considered to be theologically inferior and unclean. I’m thinking that from the perspective of some Christians, atheists are the modern day equivalent. This begs the question: Do you have to subscribe to a certain theology to serve God and inherit eternal life?

I think not.

I don’t think God cares what we believe. I think He cares how we act toward our neighbor. In this story, it is the “unsaved” person who is truly living out God’s love and participating in His kingdom.

Mind. Blown.

purple glass heart

Dreams have been a big deal in our house lately. A couple of days ago, my son woke up from a dream in which he had lived for a hundred years, gotten married, had a child and seen the world destroyed. In my son’s dream, he was living in an entirely different world. He was able to tell me what was in the history books of that world and spoke words in that world’s language, which was ancient-sounding and beautiful. It took him two hours to tell me things, and there was always more. It was literally like talking to a really old person who would tell you all the details about the good old days and World War 2, for example.

I just woke up from the most amazing dream myself. Often, when I go to sleep at night, I am asking God to show me the truth. I don’t think ALL of the truth is to be found in church or even the Bible — at least not how it is often interpreted. And sometimes the truth is distorted or twisted. I want the real thing. Last night, I believe I got some answers.

This dream began with me going to visit my son at the treatment center he’s been at three times in the past year. My son would have a pass from the hospital and be out on the street rescuing people from the most horrendous situations. He would ask a helper to escort him back to the hospital when he got tired. There was so much darkness in the world where he was helping that even the maggots from the dead were black. I began to help as well. We had to avoid the maggots and the dead people, because they would contaminate you if you spent much time in contact with them. It was very dangerous to help, because very evil individuals would try to attack you if they so much as saw you helping to rescue other people from their world of child rape, lethal drugs and murder. Perhaps spending too much time with people who are spiritually dead will rub off on you and you will begin to lose your sight. Perhaps my son is helping people (or has demonstrated that potential) and he gets worn out, and yes, attacked.

I spent time out on the street giving balm (coconut butter) to people. You’d rub it in and your skin would look clean and new and be protected. Some people would leave dirt in the balm when they scooped it out, but that was okay. If you have something that can help people, you should give it away freely, no matter what.

The people/spirits who were rescuers had super-powers. We literally flew through the air to rescue some people. We were so joyful, and the reason we flew was to show people who we were. Oprah was one of them, and when I woke up, I realized that she raises people up in life by showing them love and support.

All the destruction and killing meant that pets had been neglected by selfish and blind people or were trapped in hotel rooms. In most cases, they had been living without water and had to be put down. I cried and cried as I rescued these sweet bony animals that had either been woefully neglected or had failed to find a source of water (even though sometimes it was right in front of them in the form of a bathtub having been left full of water, for example.) I felt so heartbroken when I had to give them to the loving people to be euthanized. When I found an animal that had found a source of life, they were in good enough shape for them to be eligible for the shelter to find them a new home. Some people have the source of living water right in front of them, but don’t see it. Others are not provided with it — they are neglected as others carry on their hedonistic, selfish lives. It breaks God’s heart, I think, when he finds people in this state. God rescues them from their hell one way or another, but it makes him so sad.

I got to meet the emperor of this world. The emperor was very concerned about his worldly standing. His son was among the many people that were injured in the general destruction and badness, and the dignitary informing of this gave him a hint that he knew his son was a gay IV drug user. (He had been found with pink peppermint in his veins, lol!) The dignitary gave him plenty of opportunities to admit the injured man was indeed his son, but the emperor continued to deny him, preferring to let his son die rather than to risk losing people’s respect for his standing as emperor. He denied THE SON. This also makes me think of preachers who get on the anti-gay bandwagon because it increases their standing with their base of support. The emperor did not choose love or truth. He chose fear.

After this encounter, I was walking down a staircase admiring a beautiful glass sculpture that had belonged to the emperor. He no longer wanted it. It was very expensive, but I was able to use all my money to buy a small piece that the seller broke off. He took care to break me off the very best piece. It came off in the shape of a light purple heart. When I turned it over in my hand, it made a beautiful musical sound. It was the sound of diamonds being thrown and musically hitting the ground. When I held it in front of me, I got so much power that all I had to do was stretch out my hand and doors were open and walls came down. I didn’t even have to move under my own power. A golden light lit the way as I went far away from the emperor and his men. This was a good thing, because the emperor had realized what he had given up, and was chasing after me for it. Love will break down all barriers.

As we were surveying the absolute destruction, the promenade we were on collapsed, and we began to fall the long distance to our death. A bunch of ugly art was falling alongside me. I was afraid at first — I was falling so fast, and I was thinking about what it might feel like when I hit bottom. Then I took a deep breath and said, “I love you, Lord.” Then the Lord’s peace came over me and I woke up.

I helped a lot of people and animals before I left that place.

The Bible says that the Holy Spirit is our helper. That He is the Spirit of Truth. I’ve asked God to help me to understand things better, and this dream is what I got. I’m not going to worry about whether or not other people agree with me or not. I’m not going to read other people’s interpretations of scripture and worry about fitting them into my worldview. I am going to trust in God.

Where Are the Healers? A Lament

heart balloon art

It is possible that moving to the country from the city was one of the worst decisions my family ever made. We moved from a place where my younger son was invited to so many birthday parties that I had to keep a closet stocked with last-minute gifts to a place where he managed to go through most of elementary school without being invited to a single one.

Of course, the fact that he has two sets of grandparents, three uncles, three aunts and three cousins here in our little town made up for it. Being surrounded by loving family can help to make up for the rejection of peers and even their parents.

Alas, this was my fantasy and not reality. No family member has taken much of an interest in my son — to the point where it simply wouldn’t matter where we live when it comes to his interactions with them.

Once the S disease showed its face, I noticed that it helped my son to be around people who distracted him from what was happening in his mind. Desperate, I became bold.

“Will you take Younger Son fishing with you the next time you go?” I asked one family member. “Why not include Younger Son the next time you decide to spend a day in (neighboring city). He would love that!” I suggested to another.

Nothing changed.

Next, I tried guilt.

“Why don’t you ever spend time with your grandson?” I asked my parents.

They didn’t fall for it. Nothing has changed.

More desperate still, I asked people at the house church I was attending. I said something like, “Younger Son really needs connections with other people, role models. Will someone consider taking him under their wing a bit?”

I wish I’d never asked that question. Coping with my grief over the lack of response has been difficult.

I have a friend who has a son who is emotionally disturbed. They don’t ask for help. I used to think this was perhaps prideful, but now realize it is probably realistic on their part.

Here’s the thing. There are any number of Christians who are happy to lay hands on my son and pray for him. I appreciate this. Prayer is powerful.

But.

When you pray for bonds to be broken and healing to take place, God often answers prayers. He is a miraculous God, and sometimes He does things in mysterious ways.

Often, though, He is quite practical. He uses the people in His church as his hands and feet to accomplish His goals. He uses their love.

He sent me and my son a friend who hugs my son. She includes him in some of her plans. She even buys him little gifts. There is now a third person in his life who demonstrably loves him.

I am thankful for this. Oh boy, am I thankful. I wonder though, what if even more people loved my son in a visible way? I know that love heals.

I’ve been reading the diary of George Fox, the man who inadvertently founded the Quakers — some of the few Christians in the United States who actively resisted the institution of slavery. Fox frequently went into the churches in England and asked “Where is your fruit?”

I relate to Fox, because that is just how I feel.

The fruit of Christians should be healing love and not rejection. What if every Christian in our communities welcomed someone who is hurting into his or her life? Can you imagine the difference this would make?

In my town of 30,000, there are probably 10,000 people who attend church. These folks diligently give to food banks, the homeless ministry and other worthy causes. There are so many volunteers at our homeless shelter that it is ridiculous — they hardly have any slots to squeeze new ones in. Yet when I drive past the homeless shelter, the homeless people are always sitting outside the building alone.

No one should ever be alone in the midst of Christians.

Oh what a difference we could make if we gave ourselves over to action to complement our belief.

The lovely print is available for sale on Etsy — click on photo.

Vision of Hell

When my son had his vision of heaven, that wasn’t the only thing he saw. He told me that God also showed him hell. The reason was that he would then see why missionary work was so important.

Hell wasn’t like the popular depictions we see in cartoons or movies. It had streets, and there were rich people and poor people. There were demons, however, and there was torture.

In some ways it sounded a lot like earth, only with the evil and pain made more visible.

He saw a divide between heaven and hell. He told me that people could cross over from hell to heaven.

“How do they do that?” I asked.

“The people who are in heaven LOVE them until they can cross over,” he said.

I’m aware this is not considered to be a biblical concept. However, in recent days I’ve thought about that vision. Whether it is literal or not, it contains truth.

vision of hell

If we love people here on earth, they too can learn to love and be a part of God’s kingdom. And it’s really hard for people to love others if they haven’t themselves been loved. So we have to show them.

It has a snowball effect.

If everyone loved like Jesus said for us to, there would be no more war, no more gangs, no more bullying. All kinds of hell would be wiped out.

I think this is the main thing we need to remember. All this arguing people do about how to worship God and so on is ridiculous. The command is simple.

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’There is no commandment greater than these.”

I believe Jesus was God made visible. He showed us how to be. Then He left. He gave us the task of being him in the world. Therefore, we have no excuse for being anything but loving — loving people out of hell and into the Kingdom.

Laying it Down for Love

pure religion is this

I hope yesterday’s post didn’t come across as arrogant. Because I don’t know all the answers. I don’t even know a few of them. I just have this overwhelming feeling that I need to somehow break free of the culture — go barefoot, live in a tent in the desert, pour myself into something else besides my mortgage and the bills I ran up while not knowing how to celebrate Christmas.

Sometimes I feel angry because it’s so hard. I always imagine myself dismantling culture — taking apart the scaffolding that holds it all together and seeing what lies underneath. Living that thing, whatever it turns out to be.

I’d like to ditch the anger and live entirely in love. I definitely need to quit worrying about what other people are doing and focus on living my life in the manner God directs.

Today, my eyes lit upon a verse in the book of John. I’ll bet you’ve heard it before.

My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love have no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

Whoa.

First of all, it’s a command. From God.

Next, Jesus says to love as He loved us. Frankly, that part blows my mind.

Finally, he tells us that love is laying down our lives.

When I read that last one, the first thing that comes to mind is throwing myself in front of bus while knocking someone else out of the way. I don’t think that’s what He meant, though. At least not entirely. I think He means that we are also to give up our lives in this sense:

For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it. Matthew 16:25

Life perhaps partially being that temporal comforts with which we surround ourselves. Our house, our car, our grandmother’s Persian carpet. Our dreams for the future. Our present activities.

So if I’m right, and this is even a little bit what He means, then I should be willing to lay it down if it will show love to a brother or sister. Maybe it can be picked up again later, maybe not. And yeah, maybe it even means jumping in front of a bus. Although I’d rather not.

I think this is how people are able to live in mud huts after having grown up in suburbia. It’s how people can risk their lives spreading the gospel in New Guinea. It’s the reason a lawyer chooses to represent the poor instead of raking in six figures in corporate law. These people have laid down their lives for Love.

I want the same. Because ultimately, we all lose this life whether we want to or not.

Photo credit: Public Domain Photos

The Dream That Transformed My Life

love and lightThere’s this person on my Facebook friend’s list who I never knew all that well, although he was a very close friend of my husband and some of our mutual friends. These days, though, I feel as though I know him much better, even though we haven’t exchanged a word in years.

About three years ago, this person’s life took a pretty bad turn, with addiction taking over his and his girlfriend’s lives. The girlfriend was pregnant, which made the situation particularly bad. My husband talked about his concerns a few times. My reaction was to condemn the guy, saying things like, “What a trashy life” and “that poor baby.” I am ashamed to admit I felt a degree of disdain.

One night, I dreamed this guy was dead. He was so dead that his face was green and moldering. His friends were so sad. They gathered around him and let him feel every bit of the love they had for him. That love came from God. The guy came back to life. He was glowing, happy, reborn.

I felt jealous of all the love this guy got — it was so powerful and transforming! God said to me, “Do you want to feel some of this love?” So for a moment, I stood under a literal shower of love and it was the most amazing thing I’ve ever felt in my life — asleep or awake.

This was more than a feeling, though. It was powerful, alive, light. It woke me up.

It is worth selling everything for.

“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field. Matthew 13:44

I found the treasure!

What’s more, the guy in my dream found it too. I had no idea, until my husband mentioned he had posted some stuff about God on Facebook. I sent him a friend request, and discovered that he has been healed of his addiction and is truly born again!

I love how God reprimanded me for my unloving, judgmental attitude in the most loving way imaginable. I am changed.

That doesn’t mean that I don’t still struggle, though. I sometimes still want to gossip and judge. I can relate to Paul’s struggle.

For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!

There is no doubt in my mind we are in a spiritual battle.

I know who wins, though. Love conquers all.

Photo Credit: Ms. D. Meanor