Sir Fear

This post is about two different types of people. There are several other types of people, but these are the two I’ve been observing lately.

There are some people who allow themselves to get walked all over. They sit back and take it. Come what may. They get yelled at. Demeaned. Taken advantage of. Put down. Etc. Then one day, they snap. They’ve taken it for too long, and stuffed it to the brim. They’re like a tall glass spilling over with bitterness and hurt.

Then there are people who take nothing. They’re the ones who do the demeaning, yelling, taking advantage of others, and so on. They get defensive and put themselves on guard at all times. They have a hard time letting people get past their wall of defense.

Both tend to see themselves as the victim. In reality, both are victims. To themselves.

Person number one has a very passive way of dealing with their issues. They tend to be scared of confrontation, hurting others, taking care of themselves, etc. So, instead of running the risk of shaking hands with Sir Fear, they shrug him off and stuff it all down. Therefore, they become a victim to their own fear and way of coping with difficult situations. A person can only stuff so much though. At some point, it becomes too much to handle and it starts spilling over everyone and everything.

Person number two is someone who has been so incredibly hurt, betrayed, slammed, etc.  they have built a wall to protect themselves from everyone. They are scared of being wounded again, and so, instead of running that risk, they push everyone aside. Therefore, a victim to their own fear.

Both types seem so different. One seems docile and mild-tempered. The other seems angry and easily upset. But in reality, both are very very similar. They just both cope with the same issue in a different way.

This isn’t a post to bash either type. At all. Both have been hurt in incredibly deep, detrimental ways. Both are just trying to work past the hurt and figure out life. But both are doing it independently. Not through dependence on Christ. Which will only cause them to go around in circles and never be truly healed.

We have to allow ourselves to be healed. To go back to those nasty, hurtful places, and see the truth in the situations. Otherwise, we will forever be a victim to ourselves, the lies we believe, and Sir Fear.

Loss

kids-in-church

I was sitting in church trying to keep my mind focused during the sermon. It has this awful habit of running in every direction at the absolute worst of times. For about a month now it’s been keeping me up into all hours of the night. I sometimes feel like my will and determination are a mom and like my thoughts are her many children. She tries and tries to keep them all in one place, but few things seem to accomplish that desire. Yelling doesn’t work, looks of disappointment are a lost cause, force usually just ends in rebellion. But there she stands, always trying. Maybe one of these days I’ll figure it out ;P

Anywho, I was sitting in church and the subject of ‘loss’ kept coming to mind. So I went ahead and wrote about it.

Loss is something we all experience. It can be through many ways. The death of a loved one, the loss of a lover, the abandonment of a friend, a pet running away, losing ones favorite toy as a child, etc. It’s all loss. Loss tends to come to the same conclusion. Emptiness.

People fill that emptiness in many ways. Retail therapy, drinking, eating, not eating, changing their look, new friends, etc. Just something to fill that dark hole. Anything.

Does it ever really completely fill that hole though? Does one ever truly feel totally satisfied? Maybe. For a time. It might provide a moment of happiness, a small time of blocking it out of your mind. But that’s all it is. A band-aid.

Loss is a lifelong occurrence. Every moment I think ‘Ok. I’m alright. I’m good now.’ something else hits. Another reality  rock comes my way. But each of those stones remind me—–I can’t do this on my own. I need a shoulder to cry on, a hand to steady me when I can’t walk.

But that shoulder and that hand is already out there. God’s got this.He’s always ready and always listening.

The LORD your God is in your midst,
a mighty one who will save;
he will rejoice over you with gladness;
he will quiet you by his love;
he will exult over you with loud singing.

Zephaniah 3:17

Pretty People

beautiful

Lately the idea of unappreciated beauty keeps sneaking its way into my mind. I see pretty people everywhere I go, but few hear that they are just that. A pretty person.

I’m not entirely sure why this is. I don’t quite get why people don’t share their true thoughts more often. Why they don’t tell people more often that they’re beautiful.

I think it comes from fear. Fear of being judged, or misinterpreted.

I know personally, I’m scared of going up to someone and telling them that they’re beautiful. I’m scared that they’ll take it the wrong way and think I’m hitting on them. Or maybe that they’ll think I’m some crazy person. Who knows.

But what if we weren’t scared? What if we all decided to tell at least one person everyday that they’re beautiful? What sort of world would we live in?

Everyone needs to hear that they’re beautiful. Guys included! Everyone needs that self-esteem boost and encouragement. It really hurts me that some people go through life honestly believing they’re ugly!

So, I challenge all who read this to go and tell at least one person that they’re beautiful. Who cares if they think you’re crazy? Maybe being crazy is better than being ‘normal’. Maybe being crazy is what it takes to show the love of Christ.

Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus Controversy

I kept seeing status updates about this video. At first, I paid no attention and skipped it. You hear the saying “It’s not about religion, it’s about a relationship” until you no longer listen. I agree with the saying, I just feel it’s overused. So, when I saw this video continually being posted, I shrugged and kept going……that is until I started seeing status posts of people who disagree with it. It peaked my curiosity.

What’s my personal opinion? Well, here goes:

I believe that a lot of Christians have a very rule-based view of Christianity. When I think of ‘religion’, I think of legalism.

Being a Christian isn’t about keeping a list of do’s and dont’s. It’s about being filled to the brim with His love and His spirit. It’s about sharing that love with everyone around you.

Now, I do believe that the Lord does ask us to do certain things. But, notice His greatest command:

And He said to him, “ ‘YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’

-Matthew 22:37-39

Love. That is the greatest commandment, and the second greatest. Must be pretty important if He felt the need to make it the top two. When a person is filled with that love and embraced in His grace, they can’t help but do the things He asks us to do. Those things flow from that love for Him. The only way to have that love for Him is to experience His love for you.

There are two different versions of ‘religion’. There’s the version that Christ talked about. The love-based religion. And then there’s today’s version. What Christians have made it into. And what the guy in the video is talking about, I believe.

I think it starts to bleed into ‘religion’ and ‘legalism’ when someone does the things as a list of to-do’s. A chore list. Not because they truly, and whole-heartedly want to be used in every way for their Lord. ‘Religion’ isn’t about Christ. ‘Religion’ is focused on outward works and appearance. Christ is focused on inward works and inward appearance.

To me, religion is an excuse to put God in that box of rules. He’s this way and that way and handles a situation like this and that, etc. In reality, not one of us can ever fully understand Him, and He can’t be put in a box of our expectations.

I personally love this video and fully support it. I think this guy says a lot of things a lot of Christians need to hear. Does it ruffle some feathers? Make some uncomfortable? Challenge their beliefs? For sure. But is that honestly a bad thing? What’s so wrong about being uncomfortable and being forced to research what exactly you believe and why you believe what you believe?

I feel that too many Christians focus on being comfortable. So I encourage everyone to research. To not be scared of discomfort. To be ok with their beliefs being challenged and asking questions. How else are you going to grow?

Why I don’t like first dates

first date

I really dislike first dates. Why? Because they’re all about first impressions, no messing up, and being completely socially acceptable. 3 things I find very challenging!

First Impressions

I don’t like first impressions. They feel so fake and superficial. I feel like first dates are all about the shallow things in life. It’s about keeping things in the conversation light and fun and trying to impress. That’s all fine and dandy, and there’s nothing wrong with light and fun, but I’m a girl who loves a good, long, deep discussion. Even if it’s with a stranger. I love to sit and listen to a person’s story and to talk about beliefs and opinions and ideas and dreams. To sit for an entire evening with someone I’m trying to get to know as a possible lover and keep things shallow requires much effort on my part to not go crazy haha. Needless to say, I’m far from being a pro when it comes to first dates ;P

No Messing Up

Going out to dinner on a date, especially a first date, is one of the most stressful things!! I sit there and analyze everything on the menu. “Oh! A hamburger sounds good! Oh wait….I eat like a child and end up with half of it in my lap. That might not be a great idea. Ok, what about that scrumptious looking pasta? But what if I can’t keep it on my fork? Or can’t get it on my fork at all? Or scoop up too big of a bite and most of it ends up all over my face? Scratch that. Ooooo salad is always a winner! Plus, it makes it look like I’m a healthy eater! Which is always a plus……..except…..salad tends to get stuck in teeth and that would just be awful” So the end result is usually me giving in and ordering whatever but eating only a few bites. Thus, starving the rest of the date.

Then there’s the whole awfulness of accidentally scooting just a smidgen in your seat and the stupid seat making that embarrassing sound that sounds more than just a seat squeaking. Don’t act like it hasn’t happened to you, either! You all know what I’m talking about.

I’m convinced chairs hate me.

It’s pretty much inevitable that I mess up in some way or another. lol

Socially Acceptable

Haha……hahaha….yeahhhhh. I don’t do well with being socially acceptable.

1. My choice of clothing usually gets stares. I wear all different colored tights with heels, flats, or boots. I rarely wear jeans, but instead, most of my wardrobe consists of dresses, skirts, grandma sweaters, etc. I love bright colors like yellows, oranges, greens, and so on and so forth. I don’t stick to what’s in style, but instead I stick to what I like. So, with that said, when I go on a first date, I usually take way longer than usual to pick an outfit because I feel the need to tone things down a bit.

2. I have no shame in being loud. I laugh a lot and usually draw attention to myself in a restaurant or public place. I’ve had more than one occasion where friends have asked me to not laugh so much or so loudly because I’m embarrassing them lol. What can I say? I like to laugh.

I also tend to get very excited very easily. When I’m really excited and telling a story or explaining the root of such intense excitement, I’ve heard that I get a more high-pitched voice and louder than usual.

So, when on a date, I force myself to bring it down a few notches. To stay calm, laugh here and there, and not show too much of my real personality.

I like to keep things real and down to earth. I like to be genuine and honest in who I am. I feel like if someone doesn’t like me for me, that’s their problem. I don’t like being anything less than me. I don’t like putting up a front to impress and being fake. Being fake just feels so…..well……fake. Even if I’ve known the person previously, for some reason, when on a first date, I feel a lot of pressure to not really be myself. To act more like how I think society says girls should act.

And this, dearest readers, is why I don’t like first dates.

Can I be close to you?

moon

Tonight, I took myself out on a date. Because I’m a cheapo, I always sneak my own snacks into a theater. They’re just waaaay too pricey!! So I went and bought my ticket for New Years Eve, (every girl needs a cheesy chick flick here and there) a good hour before it started (I’m always paranoid about movies selling out). Then headed to the closest store that sells snacks and got myself some goodies.

I’ve never been to a movie by myself. To my surprise, I rather enjoyed it.

I originally went to the movies to escape for a bit. Escape from my thoughts and whatnot. But, the movie didn’t provide much relief. In fact, it got me thinking about said whatnot more. 😛

After the movie, I briskly got myself to my car and inside, since tonight is chilly. I stuck my key in the ignition and headed back home. As I was driving home, I was praying. Sometimes I listen to certain songs and they become my prayers. Tonight, it was Bloom by The Paper Kites:

So there I sat, trying to concentrate on the road while crying out my prayer.

I’m still always amazed when the Lord answers. Not even so much in that He answers, but how He answers. He answers in the most beautiful way. Tonight, He once again overwhelmed me.

As I was coming close to my street, I noticed the moon. It’s incredibly large tonight. That’s really an understatement. It’s huge, and a lovely pale yellow. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen it look quite like that.

So, there it was, perched comfortably among the stars, looking down at me. Right at that moment, I was singing along with the song ‘can I be close to you?’, and right at that moment, I sat in amazement as I realized the Lord was showing me, through the moon, that He’s right here. Close, and watching out for me.

I felt like a big-eyed girl that is curiously but cautiously staring into the eyes of her lover, as he’s wooing her. As he’s gently drawing her close and whispering beautiful things into her ear. Reminding her that she’s safe in his arms. That he will fight for her no matter what. And that, come what may, he will never, ever, leave her.

So tonight, remember, He’s wooing you. He’s drawing you deeper and deeper into the perfect safety of His arms. No matter what. No matter how crazy you may act, harsh words you may use, annoying things you might do, broken you might be, He will never, ever, leave you.

Sticks and stones may break my bones

words

“Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”………?

Since when has that been true?

Words hold so much power. You can uplift and encourage, or destroy and crush a person, just by a few simple words.

Our choice of words must be chosen with wisdom. Not just the words though, but also the tone. You can say the simplest thing, but if it is said in the wrong tone, it can still damage.

The kids I nanny are always saying rude things to each other. Like, “you’re so fat” “you’re a horrible person” “no one likes you” “you’re ugly”, the list goes on. I’m constantly having to ask them to use kinder words. They usually just laugh and say they’re just kidding. I understand that. I can come across as totally rude sometimes, but it’s in sarcasm, and I’m only that way around certain people. But, even when in jest, hurtful words can still be hurtful.

This picture is a good reminder to be careful and sensitive towards others.

Words which do not give the light of Christ increase the darkness.

~Mother Teresa