Friday, October 21, 2011


I think the reason things get to me so much when people try to attack me is because of my past. All I ever wanted growing up was acceptance. I really try not to let what others say effect me now, but sometimes it is hard - especially when what people say drudges up the past.

Even in my home, I just wanted to fit in. I literally never fit in anywhere. At home I was the problem child, the misfit. Even before I became an actual problem... As a child I wasn't very sociable -- I was content as can be playing by myself. Part of it was I wasn't really taught how to be sociable with other kids. I honestly don't know why I was called the problem child prior to my teen years... and that's probably what pushed me to become a problem. I'd heard for so long that I was one, that I became one. I wasn't a bad, or roudy child... I was quiet, and kept to myself... and apparently that was a problem. It is why I got picked on in school. Why I never had a lot of friends.

And I was always compared to my siblings... why couldn't I be like my stepsiblings, or my sister... if anything I envied them because they were what they were wanted to be. They were wanted, accepted. It was a problem that I didn't like things they did. My problem wasn't only acceptance, but being loved for who I was...

He cries in the corner where nobody sees, He's the kid with the story No one would believe.
He prays every night, "Dear God won't you please, Could you send someone here Who will love me?"

Who will love me for me, Not for what I have done, Or what I will become. Who will love me for me,
'Cause nobody has shown me what love, What love really means.

I was that kid... as a kid it was little things, but as a teen it developed into bigger, real, problems. Sex, drinking, etc. Why? Because those people seemed to care, they accepted me as I was... Were they the wrong people? Sure they were sinners -- just like the rest of us... imperfect people... but the one thing they did do was accept me for who I was.

All my life - my immediate family, my school, even my church - shunned me. Wouldn't just accept me. Wouldn't HELP me. I really felt helpless. But finally, I found who I NEEDED to help me. Who I needed to accept me, and love me. It took some long, hard, and dark roads to get there...the fact is - humans are imperfect. The only blood thicker than water is Jesus' blood.

Then he heard a voice somewhere deep inside, And it said, "I know you've murdered and I know you've lied. And I have watched you suffer all of your life, And now that you'll listen I'll, I'll tell you that I..."

I will love you for you, Not for what you have done, Or what you will become. I will love you for you,
I will give you the love, The love that you never knew, Love you for you, Not for what you have done
Or what you will become,
I will love you for you, I will give you the love, The love that you never knew.

John 3:16  “For God so loved the world,that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

Romans 5:8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Romans 8:37-39  No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Galatians 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

1 John 3:1  See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Why do People Like to Drudge up the Past?

I try very hard not to let what other people say or think bother me. I know who I am, who I've  become, and even more than that God knows who I am. He knows my heart, he knows my mind. 

But what do people honestly think they are going to achieve by drudging up someone's past? Especially someone who has found their way back to God and done a total 180 in their life. Yes, I have a past - who doesn't? And really, my past isn't as bad as people like to think it is. There are certain areas that were worse than others. I'm not proud of the things I went through. But the fact is many people go through patches in their lives. The other night my friend asked me what my best memory was from growing up (referring more to high school days, doing things with friends, etc)... honestly, I couldn't really think of anything. Looking back now I am just thankful I made it through that time in my life and that I was able to move on from it.

I guess I can look at it this way - if all someone has to talk about is my past to try and say something bad about me, then I'm doing pretty good now. I know my life is good now, because God is in it. I have a wonderful husband and children who I adore. I think part of it is jealousy. I turned my life around, I did a total 180 to the point I have a husband who I can say is faithful to me and I am faithful to him. And I can say we both know for a fact we always will be. We have made a covenant, before God, to remain true to each other through thick and thin, until death. Unlike a lot of couples these days, we DON'T take our vows lightly. We did not enter into marriage without an understanding of what we were doing. While we've gone through some tough spots (lay offs, financial struggles mostly) we've gone through them together and come out better on the other side.

I also have two AMAZING, beautiful, smart children. Despite the circumstances one of them came from, they are two of the best things in my life on this earth. Certain people try to judge every move I make... but I know the only judge who matters is God. He knows, and I know, how much I love my children, how well I care for my children... I'm not perfect by any means, but the fruits are already starting to show. I care so much about who my children become. My goal is that they become wonderful, well rounded adults. I don't have a preference on what kind of job they get, who they fall in love with, nothing like that. But I will push them to do well in school so that when they get to that point they can choose any path they want. 

Because you know what matters to me? Their FUTURE. One of the things I teach my children regularly is that people make mistakes, but we should always love them anyways. Like Jesus would. What's past is past, and we can't change it. But we can do our best in the present and build a better future. 

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right, persevering, and steadfast spirit within me. Cast me not away from Your presence and take not Your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of Your salvation and uphold me with a willing spirit.
Psalm 51: 10-12

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Calling Yourself Christian is Not a Get Out of Hell Free Card!

If judgment looms under every steeple, if lofty glances from lofty people, can't see past her scarlet letter, and we've never even met her... - Casting Crowns

Being a Christian doesn't give us the right to treat people like crap or like we're better than them, because we're not. It doesn't give us the right to call people names, like stupid, or judge their character or beliefs because they are different. Calling ourselves a Christian is not a get out of hell free card. Faith without works is dead.

21 "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many deeds of power in your name?' 23 Then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; go away from me, you evildoers.' - Matthew 7:21-23 (Read all of Matthew 7 at

If judgment looms under many steeples... The weight of the judgmental glances tell him he's better out on the road... Jesus paid much too high of price, for us to pick and choose who should come...  Which Jesus do you follow? Which Jesus do you serve? If Ephesians said to imitate Christ, why do you look so much like the world? Pretty blue eyes, curly brown hair, and a clear complexion? Is this how you see him as he did for our sins? But the word says he was battered and scarred, or did you miss that part? Sometimes I doubt we'd even recognize him. Would Jesus be accepted in your church? His blood and feet might stain the carpet... 

Living like Christ means loving others. It means accepting others. It means listening to others, understanding others, not trying to change everyone around us to be like we think they should be. It means focusing on changing ourselves to look like Christ, so people will see him through us. It is not our job to save people - that is Christ's job. Sometimes we just need to shut our mouths, because all we do is dig a hole and push people away with our words. We should be imitating Christ so people can really see who he is. Christians tarnish his name with their terrible words and actions all the time. 

Going to the alter and getting saved doesn't automatically get you into heaven if you don't act like you are saved going forward.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Jesus doesn't Condemn or Shun, he LOVES!

Stop being mean, bad-tempered, and angry. Quarreling, harsh words, and dislike of others should have no place in your lives. Instead, be king to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving you because you belong to Christ. 
Ephesians 4: 31-32 

So I was listening to a mix CD of some of my favorite Christian music on the way in to work today, and one of my favorite songs played - "Does Anybody Hear Her" by Casting Crowns. The line "they can't see past her scarlet letter, and they never even met her" reminds me of many church's today, but one in particular...

My husband grew up in the southern baptist community. Not knocking them as a whole (I don't like to stereotype) but I've not been to a southern baptist church that I'm impressed with. They are extremely religious... In fact one in particular I never felt so UNwelcome. I've been there only a handful of times. Never once was a I greeted and welcomed.But we would visit because it was my in-law's church.

The time that sticks out the most was probably my second or third visit. I cannot remember the nature of the visit, it was was some sort of event I believe, we were in the fellowship hall. My husband and I were dating at the time. (Those of you who may have read my testimony know I was knocked up during that time and we didn't get married until after my son was born.) Now I cannot honestly remember if I was pregnant at this moment in time or this was after Andrew was born, but that's not really the point. Adam was dating the pregnant girl. I felt the glares, the stares, and heard the whispers... but nothing was as bad as what came next. I walked up to a group about our age and was literally shunned. I didn't even get a word out; they saw me coming and literally turned their backs... They can't see past her scarlet letter, and they never even met her. 

But you know what's wonderful? Our lord and savior doesn't condemn or shun us. He loves us. That love is unwavering and unrelenting. My faith in him is unwavering... people, not so much. The church is human. We can't expect them to be perfect (but they should at least try to be loving!) If as Christians we're supposed to be Christ-like, then as a whole, we're failing.

"Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped."
Philippians 2:5-6

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16).
But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved (Ephesians 2:4-5).

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Religious Quotes to Live By

I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use.
-Galileo Galilei

I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.
-Mohandas Gandhi

I never knew how to worship until I knew how to love.
-Henry Ward Beecher

I would rather live my life as if there is a God and die to find out there isn't, than live my life as if there isn't and die to find out there is.
-Albert Camus

It is wonderful how much time good people spend fighting the devil. If they would only expend the same amount of energy loving their fellow men, the devil would die in his own tracks of ennui.
-Helen Keller

It's wonderful to climb the liquid mountains of the sky. Behind me and before me is God and I have no fears.
-Helen Keller 

Let your religion be less of a theory and more of a love affair.
-Gilbert K. Chesterton

More and more people care about religious tolerance as fewer and fewer care about religion.
-Alexander Chase

No man ever believes that the Bible means what it says: He is always convinced that it says what he means.
-George Bernard Shaw

Prayer does not change God, but it changes him who prays.
-Soren Kierkegaard

 There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and my heart are my temples; my philosophy is kindness.
-Dalai Lama