Wednesday, December 14, 2011

I Have No Idea What to Do Next


I find myself in an unfamiliar place today.  The place is known as I-have-no-idea-what-to-do-next.  I realize now the times in my life I felt I was at the door of I-have-no-idea-what-to-do-next, those times were only to prepare me for the real deal, which is now, those times were to teach that I can overcome.  I can climb out of the pit.  There are lessons to be learned from every broken moment in our lives and this moment is no exception; I know that to be true.  However, I have no idea what the lesson is, as yet.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Clanging Cymbals

A few days ago on this blog I wrote about the 'Scriptural Christian' - someone who has all the outer trappings of Christianity, according to scripture, but yet authentic Christianity has not yet penetrated past skin deep. I am not saying these people aren't saved, nor are they evil. Scripture tells us all it takes to be saved is a belief in Jesus. What I am saying is that these people, these Scriptural Christians are missing out on a huge part of life by holding back the love of Jesus.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Christianity Isn't About Regurgitation

It is my belief that there are problems within the Christian church at large.  Undoubtedly, if you've read any of my blog posts on the subject of Christianity, you already know I can't seem to keep my mouth shut (or my fingers still, as the case may be) when I  feel strongly about a misrepresentation of my faith, so here I am again, talking to you about something I think needs to be addressed with Christ's followers.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Instrument of Peace or Weapon of Strife?

As a Christian, I often get frustrated this time of year because there is so much pushing, shoving, and downright rudeness all around. We get mad because someone bought the last great-deal sale item we wanted; we rush around trying to find the perfect Christmas card, all the while cursing the fact that we are obligated to send them at all since it's really not something we enjoy; we tap our foot in frustration because there are four people in front of us in the line at the store while three cash registers sit empty of cashiers; we argue with family members over gifts and decorations and wrapping paper; we loudly proclaim MERRY CHRISTMAS to everyone we come in contact with because we don't go in for all that Politically Correct BS and we don't care who we offend by saying MERRY CHRISTMAS. No one is taking CHRIST out of our CHRSTmas, dagnabbit!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Don't Take Christ Out of My Christmas

This post originally appeared on this blog on December 10, 2010.  I thought it was a topic that could be revisited year after year.

During this time of year there are inevitably blogs and articles galore about Christmas. The commercialization of Christmas; the debate over whether to 'do' Santa or not; questions about whether to boycott Target because they stopped having Salvation Army bell ringers stationed outside their entrance-ways; articles setting us straight on the origins of Christmas; debates about the proper holiday greeting, etc., etc., etc. There is endless debate going on about every aspect of Christmas. 

Very controversial is Christmas. Interestingly enough, the man whose birth we Christians celebrate on Christmas day, is a pretty controversial man indeed. He was, when he was alive, and he has continued to be for the past 2000+ years since his death. It stands to reason that the celebration of his birth would be equally steeped in controversy.

I don't presume to speak for Jesus, but if the accounts of his life can be relied upon, it is a pretty safe bet that he would not mind the controversy. What he probably would mind, however, is if we (his followers) steamrolled over everyone and gave them what-for if they didn't believe in celebrating his birth.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

'Tis the Season for Compassion

During this season of Thanksgiving and subsequent holidays, both religious and non-religious,  a lot of people reflect on their good fortune, and reach out to others with compassion.  It's a time when we donate food to food banks, purchase toys for needy children and perhaps, at the very least, drop a few coins in the bell ringer's pail as we bustle into the store to do our own holiday shopping.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Those Tricky Little Homos

Now, now, don't get upset, I am not talking trash about any one group of people; I would never do that. I am talking about some really tricky homos - homophones and homonyms. These tricky little rascals threaten to get the best of even the most conscientious of writers. Let's start with a simple definition of each.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Certified Word Nerd


How does one become a certified word nerd?  I don't think there is a form to fill out or a test to take or a real certificate to give one the distinction; it is more of a self proclaiming certification.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Realistic Non-Extreme Couponing

I am a long time coupon user (or couponer if you want to use the industry jargon).  I used them back when I was single and had a very limited budget; I used them after I got married when it was just the two of us; I used them when I quit my job to be a stay at home mom.  That's almost 30 years worth of couponing (again industry jargon) experience.  For a number of reasons, a few years ago, I stopped using coupons for a period of time:  I was too busy; I had a couple of surgeries; I switched to more organic and natural products.  Those were a few of the reasons.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Times, they are changing. Really?


Over the last 20 years I have heard (and probably said) time and time again - What is this world coming to? It seems to us that the depravity, poverty, subjugation and hopelessness in the world is just too overwhelming. Surely things have never been this bad. Surely it is the beginning of the end of the world as we know it - it can't get any worse than this.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Wrestling with the Darkness

I admit, I have dark, brooding parts to my mind; it's just how I am. I have had to learn to embrace this part of my personality as well as the more light-filled parts of myself. When put together, all the parts make me, me. It is my belief, that God made me this way, and he did so for a reason. There are all kinds of people in the world, and differences are a good thing. My dark moods

Friday, September 23, 2011

I Wish I'd Known

I wish I had known then what I know now. We've all heard that expression. Perhaps we have even used it a time or two ourselves. We often think it would've been nice, if at a younger age we'd had the wisdom we now possess  Would it really have benefited us though? Would we have known what to do with that wisdom? Probably not. There

Thursday, September 22, 2011

I Don't Condone Ignorance and Bigotry...

But that doesn't mean anyone will change their ignorant, bigoted behavior.  People will continue to live how, and believe what, they choose. I can't change the behavior of others, I can, however, speak out against it. I have heard and read many a statement about homosexuality and gay marriage both in real life and on the www. It never takes a deep dig before I hear (or see) the statement: I don't condone homosexuality, but people have a right to live however they please. *snarf*

Fantasy Fudge - It Tastes Like Christmas


I first wrote this blog on another website two Christmases ago. I thought I would share it this year on my own blog. Hope you enjoy it and it inspires you to recall some happy memories of Christmases (or whatever holiday you celebrate this time of year) past.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I Am Who I Am

As a Christian, it is difficult to read Psalm 139 and not come away knowing that God made us who we are. He knew us before we were formed. All of the quirks and the annoyances of our being as well as the wonderful qualities we possess, can be placed firmly at the feet of God himself. It is all His fault. It is all credited to Him. So why do we, so often, try to mold ourselves into something that we're not in order to blend in with everyone else?

Monday, September 19, 2011

There is a Reason


"For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven" so says Ecclesiastes chapter three verse one (ASV). As a believer in God, I believe this to be a true statement, but at times, it is hard for me to understand that even the trials have a purpose. The sadness that we feel seems to overwhelm and leaves us shaken and unsure. Why?! We rail at the powers that be. "What were you thinking, Lord?"

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Bell's Palsy and Other Detours: Part 4

I'm not proud of this fact, but I will admit it:  I've been feeling sorry for myself.  With good reason too, by golly.  I feel justified in my wallowing.  Every time I go to the doctor, I find out I have a new diagnosis of yet another malady; and it's getting old.  In the past seven months, since I was diagnosed with Bell's Palsy, I have been diagnosed with a corneal ulcer, autoimmune inner ear disease (with all the related hearing loss, tinnitus and vertigo), Sjorgren's syndrome and now, the newest thing-- synkinesis, which is a result of the damaged nerve, which caused the Bell's Palsy in the first place, not healing properly.  It causes the signals from nerve to brain to muscle to misfire, resulting in uncontrollable facial movements. I'm so annoyed, I feel like screaming at...someone or something "WHY ME!  Why do I have to keep getting these aliments?  What have I done in my life to deserve this lot?"  And thus, I have been feeling sorry for myself.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Vessel of Love

Being a Christian is so much more than regurgitation of scripture and saying all the right things. It is more than reading meditations, prayers and interpretations written by someone else. It is a deep and abiding personal relationship with your Lord.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

It is Well With My Soul

This past year has been challenging.  Several friends have lost loved ones, gotten divorced, lost jobs and had health problems.  I try not to get bogged down in the problems of other people, while still being there for my friends and supporting them however I can.  These past few months it has become increasingly difficult to remove myself from the pain of others.  The fact that I can empathize with others is both a blessing and a curse.  Empathy allows me to be a good friend, but it also makes me feel deeply the pain of others.  Couple that with some struggles of my own, and I can really feel weighed down.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Is Your Child a Bully? The Answer May Surprise You.

This was the first week of school in my area of the country.  Everyone headed back to school, anxious to get the new school year under way.  Understandably, some kids were apprehensive about the year to come.  Unknown territory is hard to face at times, and going into a new grade, with new teachers, a new locker combination to remember, new hallways to navigate and new friends to make can make even the bravest among students nervous on the first week.  No one is immune.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Jesus Is...

In Psalm 15, the person whom David is describing sounds like Jesus. Who else can say his walk is blameless? No one but Jesus. As followers of Jesus, we all strive for that perfection that Jesus embodied, but we can never achieve it.  Of course, knowing that we can't acheive perfection does not give us license to simply do as we will and continue in our old sin patterns.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Give Me That Old Time Religion.


Lately, I have heard clambering, from some Christians, for a good dose of Old Fashioned relgion. But I have to ask-- old fashioned by what standard? What we think of as old fashioned was, prior to being old fashioned, was once a new way of thought. The world is ever evolving, and has been since the dawn of time.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Does My Life Have Value?

Wow, has it really been six weeks since I wrote on this blog?  During the summer it is hard to find a quiet moment to sit down and collect my thoughts, much less put them into some sort of coherent order to write them down.  Especially now that my kids are older. Some like to stay up late, some like to get up early, so there is someone around all the time.  I can't stay up late enough or get up early enough to avoid them.  Not that I want to avoid them altogether, mind you, I just enjoy a quiet moment now and then, and summer, with its long days and lax schedules leaves little time for quiet moments.  Not in a house with three teenagers and a 12 year old anyway.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Are you a Christian? Qualify that, please.

I was watching a Youtube clip of Dan Savage yesterday in which he addressed his reputation as an anti-Christian proponent.  He has, been criticized for  making negative comments about Christianity in some of his podcasts, speaking engagements and talks, I don't know if criticized is the right word, but he says he is often approached by Christians who feel the need to let him know that not all Christians are homophobic bigots.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Judgmental Christianity

It's happened more than once. I have been chastised a few (thousand?) times for bringing up issues I feel are wrong within the Christian church.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Bell's Palsy and Other Detours - Part 3

It's been a while since I wrote an update about my Bell's Palsy and the various and sundry complications and offshoots that have gone along with it.  Truthfully, I never thought it would go on this long, but now that I am nearing the 4 month mark, I am no longer optimistic of a speedy recovery.  That is not to say I am pessimistic about the outcome, but I am just being realistic about the recovery time.  I am now headed into long-term illness territory and I will honestly say that I have had more than one panic stricken moment thinking about the ramifications of long-term illness, both in terms of my physical as well as my emotional well being, not to mention how those ramifications impact my family.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

The End is Near. Or not.

Last week the blogsphere, Facebook, Twitter, etc were abuzz about the predicted end of the world as we know it on May 21st.  Most posts were tongue-in-cheek, poking fun at the people who actually believed they would be raptured last Saturday.  I admit I had some fun posting silly pictures and whatnot myself.  I mean, come on, they made it so easy.  Anyone who has ever read a bible knows that it clearly states that even Jesus himself didn't know when the time would come for him to return.  It makes me wonder why people believe a clear chalitain like Harold Camping and why some seem to be preoccupied with the so called End Times.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Why do you care?

Following a blog post I wrote a few weeks ago, I had a conversation with someone about a subject I touched on in that blog.  The subject being, how Christians talk about love and acceptance, but in practice, we don't always live up to those standards.  The example I gave was of church visitors and how church members react differently towards LGBT visitors than a 'wholesome' looking heterosexual visitor. Both would likely be acknowledged, only the blatantly bigoted among us would completely ignore a visitor, but the heterosexual would be more warmly and readily accepted into the fold than the LGBT visitor.

Monday, May 2, 2011

OSAMA BIN LADEN IS DEAD!!

Osama Bin Laden is dead and people all over the United States are reveling. They are waving our flag and chanting "Hey, hey, hey, goodbye" from a pop music song in the streets. As an American, who was shocked and saddened by the 9-11 Terrorist Attacks, just like everyone else, I admit my first thought was - Good.  Justice has been served.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Listening to Jesus

I have to admit it.  I am sometimes judgmental.  I admit it without pride and with more than a little regret.  I don't want to judge people.  I want to be like Jesus.  I want to look at everyone and see them, and their problems, through his eyes. Unfortunately there is a little thing called humanity that stands between my reactions/feelings and Jesus'.  I strive to narrow that gap, however, by praying and reading scripture for insight and resolution.  Sometimes that insight comes from those prayer and study sessions, and I can see more clearly right then and there.  Then, other times, it takes a bit longer, and my insight doesn't come straight from prayer, it comes from a less obvious source, but I believe that the insight is an answer to those prayers nonetheless.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Resurrection Day



When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body. Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb and they asked each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?”

Saturday, April 23, 2011

If you are a Christian, don't mention homosexuality

Something very odd happens when I mention the word homosexuality (or gay) in one of my blogs.  Mind you, it is not usually here on my blog itself, but on another website where I cross-post.  The blog post doesn't even have to be about homosexuality itself; the theme of the post could be any number of things from my left-wing views to compassion.  It doesn't matter what the original theme is.  If I mention homosexuality someone (or more) invariably gloms onto my non-judgmental stance on the subject and will call me out on it.  The whole of the rest of the blog is disregarded and the point is downright ignored, the focus goes solely to educating me on what the bible says about homosexuality.

Friday, April 22, 2011

We Are The Reason


As they led him away, they seized Simon from Cyrene, who was on his way in from the country, and put the cross on him and made him carry it behind Jesus. A large number of people followed him, including women who mourned and wailed for him. Jesus turned and said to them, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me; weep for yourselves and for your children. For the time will come when you will say,

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Is Extreme Couponing Really Worth It?

As moms, most of us would agree that feeding our families (hopefully nutritious) food is one of the most important things we do while raising our children.  Any way we look at it, it is time consuming and in these economic times it is becoming increasingly more and more expensive.  I personally am constantly looking for ways to feed my family more economically. And with four kids, three of whom are adolescent boys (plus the posses of friends they constantly invite over) it is a daunting task.  I go in and out of doing a good job of watching what I spend versus just throwing stuff in the cart and hoping for the best.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Christian Lefties

Maybe I should have titled it Christian Leftists or Liberal Christians, perhaps, because I obviously don't mean Christians who have dominant left hands.  No, what I am talking about is Christians who have leanings that are considered leftist, and in the minds of some, wrong ideas by extension.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Let's Face It

My last few posts have been about my effort to come to grips with prolonged illness.  I have talked about the pain.  I have relayed some of the lessons I have learned from the experience and have even shared some fears that I have overcome in the process.  One thing I have not done, that I have not had the courage to do, is allow myself to be seen.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Unanswered Prayer?

I have been thinking a lot about prayer lately.  Probably because I have been doing a lot of praying since I have been ill now for going on six weeks.  I believe in prayer.  I believe that miracles have and still can occur when people pray.  I have faith in a God who listens to each of our prayers and answers them all.  What I am unsure of is how to handle the answers.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Bell's Palsy (and Other Detours) - Part 2

This blog is a continuation of  Bell's Palsy - Part 1  and picks up where it left off.

I sat down here several times to write this blog.  I wrote two or three paragraphs two or three different times. Each time, I detailed the pain of the corneal ulcer I developed as a complication of my Bell's Palsy.  I recounted the back to back to back doctor's appointments which culminated in having to have my eye partially sewn shut to hopefully speed the healing of the ulcer that threatens to take the sight

Friday, March 4, 2011

Bell's Palsy Part 1

Every now and then in our lives we come up against a situation that stretches us.  Something that forces us to not only step outside the box, but to remove the box entirely and create a new one, with new boundaries, borders and rules.  These are the kinds of things that we maneuver through, only to emerge a different person than when we started.  Life altering experiences come in many different forms, illness, divorce, job loss, a death in the family. Not all have to be of the unpleasant variety, it could be a huge job promotion, a new baby or signing the mortgage on our first new home, but a lot of times it is the unpleasant that forces us to take stock of our lives in the most basic of ways.  We tend to grow when we are uncomfortable with the way things are at any given moment.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Family Crisis

I have heard it said that a family crisis can either bring a family closer together or it can tear it apart.  I believe this to be a true statement, at least from my personal experience.  Our family has gone through a crisis, let me rephrase that, our family is going through a crisis.  The details of the crisis are not important, the fact is, no matter what the crisis, a crisis is a crisis and it turns our world upside down.  Every day brings a new challenge to either keep fighting or to give in to the temptation to fall apart.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Why Me?

It is sometimes hard not to paint ourselves into the 'Why Me?' corner when it seems that at every turn, there is a setback or another piece of 'bad luck' that comes our way.  Painting ourselves into that corner however, is just that, painting ourselves into a corner.  In the corner there is not much to do but stay stuck and feel sorry for ourselves.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Are you under any stress?

"Are you under a lot of stress?"  Those were the first words the doctor asked me after I told her the symptoms that brought me to her office yesterday morning.  The symptoms were quite frightening and more than a little annoying.  Basically the left side of my face

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

How do you measure success?

I don't put a lot of stock in academics.  Don't get me wrong, I love learning and strongly encourage it in my children and others as well, I just don't care about being graded on it. I have never enjoyed studying anything just for the sake of memorizing some facts for a test; it just seems ridiculous to me.  Ridiculous it may be, but it is also a necessary evil.  There has to be some way to measure a student's aptitude, so grades and standardized tests do have their place in life, I (begrudgingly) suppose.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Bebo Norman, "Pull Me Out"



I loved this song, Pull Me Out, by Bebo Norman the first time I heard it.  It reminded me that when I feel myself sinking into depression or I find myself in the midst of a panic attack, that I belong to God who will reach down and pull me out.  Isaiah 41:13 contains a promise from God that I need not fear depression and anxiety because he will reach down, take hold of my hand and help me.