PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT (yes, this is for you)

Here’s the thing:

I don’t want to be the one saying this.

I don’t want to, but I’m going to.

I’m going to go through simple ways we as a society can make small changes for the next generation.

Many of you are probably already aware or practicing these things in your own home.

But maybe you haven’t had the words to stand up to others in your family, or insist these are followed outside the home, because, yes, it would be deemed AWKWARD.

 

So here’s my Public Service Announcement.

 

To those who have young children in their families, or are close friends with those who have young kids, THIS IS IMPORTANT.

 

Kids have THE say in what happens to THEIR bodies.

If a kid says they don’t want to be tickled, if any part of them is saying stop

(I don’t care if they are laughing,

that’s the body’s response, btw, NOT an indication of enjoyment)

FREAKING STOP.

 

Before there’s a hug or a kiss goodbye or hello, ASK.

Simply,

“Can I have a hug?

Can I have a kiss?”

If, in any way, the child is not indicating an absolute “yes”—

BACK OFF (and be OKAY with it!)

Don’t act upset, or try to guilt the child into giving you what you want—

(Do you see how messed up that is!?)

 

(How to treat children is for MEN AND WOMEN, because, women, I’ve seen you do it too)

 

I have members in my family, maybe not close members of the family, but a part of my family who I am uncomfortable with.

Yep. I said it(!)

But because we are family, and I am a woman, I don’t have personal space.

I don’t get asked for a hug.

I am given one.

I don’t get asked for my personal space to be invaded.

It just is.

 

Because, there is an assumption that either I’m okay with it, or I am not important enough of a human being to be treated the same way I would be if I was a man.

So men, if you are standing next to a woman, maintain the same boundaries you would if she was a man.

Oh yes, I know, you’re a heterosexual male.

But guess what, we don’t want your heterosexuality shoved down our throats.

You have not been invited to touch us, so don’t.

Would you come up behind another man and start rubbing his shoulders?

No?

So why the hell do you think it’s okay to treat a woman that way?

We should be treated with respect and dignity.

It should never be assumed we are okay with your touch (however “innocent” and “friendly”)

I swear if one more person says “he’s just being friendly” — I may punch them in the face.

No he isn’t.

He’s being dominating.

And he’s okay with it.

And making me feel small and insignificant and honestly I doubt he even second guesses what he’s doing.

 

Men, if you are taking a picture with a group, and you end up next to a woman, no that doesn’t give you permission to get closer to her than if she was a man.

Would you rest your head on a man’s head?

Or wrap your arm like so around another man’s body?

So why are you doing it to a woman?

 

Guys, I don’t think you realize, because we as woman have been told since we were children to:

Do what we’re told.

Be obedient.

Be nice.

Hug goodbye.

Give them a kiss.

 

It has been “give give give”

And “obey obey obey”

As though we as girls, and as women, don’t get to decide if we are uncomfortable.

We are placed in the society where we submit to the comfortability of the male.

 

Here’s the deal men,

We as women won’t be offended if you assume you cannot touch us.

If you assume we have a personal space

(the same as you would give another male, because, you know, in this society if you are straight and don’t want to be considered gay, you give other guys a respectable berth.)

Just because you are attracted to women doesn’t mean you get to go stand in a woman’s space.

Or expect her to want to hug you.

Or share a seat with you.

 

Wake up, men.

Wake up, and realize an extra sense of respect towards women is not just appreciated,

BUT we are DEMANDING it.

For our mothers.

For our sisters.

For our friends.

For our neighbors.

For our daughters.

For US.

 

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All Creatures of our God and King, Lift up your Voice…

cslewis

 

The problem is, there has been a line drawn in the sand.
— But not from those who support either of these people- Not really.
No, the line in the sand is rather haters of one against haters of the other.
— I have not heard from a single person their belief the person they are voting for is the actual, factual, really real best candidate for the job.

 

We don’t want him, because he’s said this.

And we don’t want her because she’s done this.

We don’t like him, because these are his patterns.

We don’t like her because she’s deceived on many matters.

 

He is not a leader we want as an example to our children.

She should not be in the running but rather she should be in prison.

If he gets elected we will see a nuclear war.

If she gets put in office she will bring the end of it all.

#makeAmericagreatagain

#Istandwithher

Do you know which of these you will choose?

Do you even know which, if either, is true?

Because I do believe both of these sentiments false,

–and that our country is becoming so utterly lost.

 

Because here is the truth,

and I hope you see it too:

We are being ruled by our fears

while our faith gets the boot.

 

I’m not hearing that we have a different choice,

to “speak up, speak out, go ahead you have a voice!”

If you can’t stand behind either then why stand behind one

-you see as less threatening-

But whom you still don’t believe will get the job done?

 

Why aren’t we in prayer, on our knees, begging grace?

And mercy and kindness and love to replace

All of the hate and fear in our hearts–

Why don’t we ask Him where we should start?

 

In God we trust” is what we all claim–

But are we coming to Him at the breaking of day?

Are we seeking Him out in humility to ask–

what vote He wants us to actually cast?  

 

Or do we hold tight to our comforts and abandon our Lord?

Striving and clawing and crying for more?

For more to join us, to join in this fray–

Is this the devil working to destroy all our days?

 

Oh yes, he’s bearing witness with glee,

as he witnesses this land of liberty

and it’s freedoms all being fully enslaved

To the fears of citizens’ comforts being taken away.

 

This is not a following of Jesus,

This tearing asunder

Is allowing the devil to come in and to plunder.

So go ahead: fight against this looming day…

 

By ganging up behind a person you didn’t want in the first place.

But chant all their slogans til your blue in the face.

And become one of so many marching ants

–who only shout and cry out against a person they hate.

 

Just keep this in mind, while you struggle in step

In the midst of some mudslingers you haven’t fully met

The person you cheer and the person you despise

Were both equally created in the Maker’s Eyes.

 

They are both human, so this is both true-

The person you hate was made just like you.

In the image of God, His bearer they are –

He alone created them and He knows every mar.

 

The freedom to elect by voting was never meant

To ring every one out until they’re utterly spent

The leaders of our country were meant to be

Elected by people like you and me–

 

Not because of a fear one would be worse-

But an actual belief one was the right course-

That one would go down in our proud history

As the best person to lead our “Land of the Free.”

 

In this election, however, this just isn’t the case-

So, I’m asking, are you just trying to save face?

Or are you casting your vote for one who will serve –

The absolute best in the office this term?

 

Because, if your answer is no, if you haven’t been praying

And humbled down on your knees until they are aching- 

If you haven’t been letting your Father know-

You believe He’s still here, you believe He will show

 

Then why on this earth do you not give this to Him?

And vote how He saysgive. Him. the. win.

We can play to our fears, and hold our liberties tight–

Or we give them over to God, and let this be His fight.

 

Vote as a Christian, not just as a person

Afraid for your party to lose an election.

Let’s lay down our weapons, and while they’re gathering dust

May we actually be a nation who IN GOD WE DO TRUST.

 

Hush, Little Baby

     Hush little baby,

     Don’t say a word.

     The man touched you, sure,

     But let’s just ignore.

What’s done is done,

Speaking won’t solve a thing.

You think you need to talk,

But we like the silencing.

     Hush little baby,

     Don’t you dare speak.

     Standing up for injustices

     Will only make you weak.

If you become woke

Then what will we do

When we can’t rule the world

With the bottoms of our shoe.

     So hush little baby,

     Don’t you even breathe.

     Those people there in chains

     They don’t want to be freed.

They made their own choices

So just let them lie

In the state of their birth’s making

Until the day when they all die.

     Hush little baby,

     Don’t say a word.

     If you choose to rock the boat then

     That’s the end of our world.

So give me your voice,

And I will teach you to deceive.

And show you how lying to yourself

Is your only way to have peace


     Oh little baby,

     Your Father hears your voice.

     I see how you’re curled up

     And don’t feel like there’s a choice.

But oh my sweet child,

I’ve heard your unspoken cries,

And I know what’s happened

In the darkest of these nights.

     Oh my sweet baby,

     Come to Me. You can cry.

     And I will hold your broken pieces,

     Until your tears are all dry.

It’s okay my sweet child,

I’ve seen all the evils done,

And that’s why I’m holding you

Because you need to be the one.

     To go into this battle,

     With your head held high,

     And search out all of those,

     Who have been told not to cry.

I need you to hold them,

Like I Am holding you.

Show them My Love,

And tell them I’m coming soon.

     Because this is not forever,

     This home is not for you,

     There is a place being prepared,

     Where everything is made anew.

All the evil and injustice,

Will never come inside.

But all the judgement will strike

Against those who silence  My  children’s  cries.

     So don’t hush little baby,

     Yes, It’s okay to cry,

     They can’t hurt you anymore,

     For I Am by your side.

Rise up, little child,

And stand on solid ground,

For I gave you to this world,

To turn it upside down.

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which hours are ours?

“My hope is built on nothing less

Than Jesus blood and righteousness

I dare not trust the sweetest frame

But wholly trust in Jesus name

 

When Darkness seems to hide His face

I rest on His unchanging grace

In every high and stormy gale

My anchor holds within the veil

 

Christ alone, cornerstone

Weak made strong, in the Saviour’s love

Through the storm, He is Lord

Lord of all

 

His oath, His covenant, His blood

Support me in the whelming flood.

When all around my soul gives way

He then is all my hope and stay

He then is all my hope and stay

 

Christ alone, cornerstone

Weak made strong, in the Saviour’s love

Through the storm, He is Lord

Lord of all    

                              It is well,

                                With my soul.

                             It is well, 

                                With my soul.

                            It is well, it is well, with my soul.

Christ alone, cornerstone

Weak made strong, in the Savior’s love

Through the storm, He is Lord

Lord of all. 

 

When He shall come with trumpet sound,

Oh, may I then in Him be found.

Dressed in His righteousness alone,

Faultless stand before the throne.”

-HillsongUnited

 

there’s a lot, in death, our earthly minds cannot comprehend. attempting to cling to the grace of it all at times alludes us. it is as though we are trying to grasp the sands slipping through the hourglass. 

and the hours of the days, the days of the weeks of the months of the years of life…

they are made up of “Ours.”

and what is ours?

Our memories.

Our hopes.

Our dreams.

Our ambitions.

Our accomplishments.

and it’s all sand… the all of “ours” broken down into all the hours of a person’s human existence.

and what about THE hour? that moment in time when it all just shifts?

when the sands stand still.

the clock stops ticking.

…because it’s no longer counting down to a human existence but you are on the eternal clock now, where time doesn’t run out and there’s a blessed assurance of being in the presence of your Eternal Father for infinity times infinity. 

how do you start living your life then?

              what changes?

                                what shifts outwardly?

…when suddenly time is no longer an issue…

what do you do?

and what if this moment comes early in life? – does it change the “ours” – does it affect your hours? 

but what if it comes at the end?

when there hasn’t been an opportunity to live out the “ours” with Christ, but you enter into your final hour with Him– what have you missed?

-and do those you leave behind mourn or celebrate? … or weep tears of joy

but we rejoice in the goodness of God and His Saving Grace and His Love that endures forever. past the existence of time and after the shifting sands of hours come to stand perfect and stilled, and beyond the infinity times infinity.

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Behold, I will bring them from the north country and gather them from the farthest parts of the earth, among them the blind and the lame, the pregnant woman and she who is in labor, together; a great company, they shall return here.

With weeping they shall come, and with pleas for mercy I will lead them back, I will make them walk by brooks of water, in a straight path in which they shall not stumble, for I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my firstborn. 

Hear the word of the Lord, O nations, and declare it in the coastlands far away; say, ‘He who scattered Israel will gather him, and will keep him as a shepherd keeps his flock.’ For the Lord has ransomed Jacob and has redeemed him from the hands too strong for him. 

They shall come and sing aloud on the height of Zion, and they shall be radiant over the goodness of the Lord, over the grain, the wine, and the oil, and over the young of the flock and the herd; their life shall be like a watered garden, and they shall languish no more. 

Then shall the young women rejoice in the dance, and the young men and the old shall be merry. I will turn their mourning into joy; I will comfort them, and give them gladness for sorrow. 

I will feast the soul of the priests with abundance, and my people shall be satisfied with my goodness, declares the Lord.” 

Jeremiah 31:8-14

when the soul needs the touch of rain

there’s just something about the rain. it makes me want to sleep under a metal roof- to hear the crescendo of every single drop as it crashes down.

the splash and shatter.

the quenching of the dry ground.

there’s something about the storm raging outside that stills the wrestling on the inside. it’s a soothing quiet in the midst of tumultuous downpour. 

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when the heart races and the mind dances with dreams of happily-ever-afters… to be calmed with the knowledge that we were placed here to live our imperfectly ordinary lives.

and that the ordinary life that lives and dies in Christ has indeed found the happily-ever-after the Fairy Tales never could quite grasp. Because the Joyfully-Ever-After will be the best yet to come, truly.

The end credits will not roll with the death toll.

the trumpets will sound, and we will rise.

Christ came to earth after a lineage of ordinary people, making ordinary lives, in the midst of messiness and hardships- that’s the humanity Christ was born to. 

a line full of screw-ups, let-downs, short-comings- just typical everyday people. 

how reassuring to know that we don’t have to be the Cinderella or the Prince Charming for Christ to make our lives purposeful.

beautiful.

redeemed.

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that i don’t have to have the perfect dance steps or be dressed by birds to live the life Christ has called me to live. i get to be the “me” He created – in my normal, every-day imperfectness –

because you see, when the longings and the brokenness- the bitterness and the hurts become entirely too great, we still have the One who makes the Joyfully-forever-after here and now– He brings His kingdom to us and we are held by Him when we still and Behold Him. 

when the storms rage all around and the internal somehow finds a perfect peace? … to dwell right there in that.

Beholding the King. being held by Him. His fingerprints, on our lives.

…to take His beauty and my mess. and that is living the perfected ordinary. 

restored and ready to step out into the onslaught of the ordinarily mundane of the day, or the brutality of a fresh hardship, or the pummeled pressure of old and constant pains- remaining in His hands. shelter from the storm.

completely and beautifully ordinary. 

 

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when you decide to build an ark…

you’re going to feel like the mouse who was given the cookie.

because the calling is warming and lovely and good.

and then you become bored with it.

or you eat it.

either way, you begin to compile a list.

and to expect that what’s next on your list is the thing you need to get next.

immediately.

now.

and one item leads to another and to another…

and we never stop to ask what our next step should be…

 

i am building an ark.

well, i am called to build an ark.

 

i have a hammer.

nails.

wood.

 

but i don’t know what the end result is.

i do not have every step laid out for me in an organized manner.

and yes, even writing that out is difficult for me. admitting that i do not and will not have control.

not even close.

i’m not sure what i have.

and there’s a voice in the back of my head telling me that all of this little stuff is utterly pointless.

that these little things are like throwing a couple pebbles into the pond. when what you really want is to roll that boulder off the cliff and watch the waters erupt.

 

“Mover” and “Shaker.”

it’d sure be nice to have those labels.

currently i’m living under the monikers “Wife,” “Mom-of-Three,” “In-Over-Her-Head,” “Pretty-Sure-She-Doesn’t-Know-What-She’s-Doing”… and, well, you get the picture…

i forget the one title, the one identifier, that actually and ultimately matters: “Co-Heir-with-Christ”

see, He’s the one asking me to build this ark. For Him.

patiently. persistently. daily. i am called to pick up my cross and follow Him. every day, for that day, to take the little steps i am called to take out of obedience to the One who holds the Bigger Picture in the palm of His hand.

to relinquish the living of my life for my own self, surrendering it to Him.

and taking those nails, those boards, that hammer, and building with my life something greater.

 

you need the little steps to accomplish the big things.

you can’t run a marathon with one gigantic leap. sadly. otherwise i would totally have run a few of those by now.

But there’s still good news, because you don’t need to know how to build the entire ark.

just know how to take the little steps.

 

because you can’t build an ark in a day.

God’s best for you unfolds throughout your life. as you make the little, seemingly inconsequential choices, to obey Him.

yes, at the end of my days i may look back on it and never see some enormous, world changing magnitude of erupted waters.

but there will be the ripples from those pebbles.

touching more ripples from others’ pebbles.

and all of those ripples will have an effect that will be made perfect.

 

 

don’t try to live your life by another’s advice

i recently had a conversation with someone very close to me. a conversation that felt more like condemnation and judgement and rules to follow more than anything else. 

it rubbed wrong. and hot.

there was a burning in my throat that begged me to unleash. it felt like i was going to start screaming through the phone until the sheer volume of my voice could possibly peel back their ignorance. 

and it wasn’t because it was convicting. it was because, i truly believe, it was wrong. 

it was about what a wife’s role is.

a role which is changing so quickly and which almost everyone has a slightly differing opinion about. 

so, yes, in the midst of juggling children and chores, laundry and food, and just wanting to enjoy some small part of the day i get someone telling me i’m doing it… all. wrong. 

ouch.

i get told that despite my 4.5 year old, soon to be 3 year old, and 15 month old, my house should be completely cleaned up at the end of the day.

that my children should be completely clean as well, ready for bed, AND happy at the end of the day.

that dinner should be ready and everyone excited for when daddy gets home.

i was very glad i wasn’t facetiming this person. 

because i was red.

the fires inside of me were surging out of my skin and begging me to unleash my tongue on this crazy out-of-their-mind person who who cannot fully relate to what i have gone through, am going through, or most likely ever will go through in my life…

so fold the laundry.

clean the floors.

dust.

mop.

vacuum.

there should be no toys out.

no crying children.

just happy, angelic, stolen-from-the-family-phone-plan commercial family… ready and smiling as they are awaiting the return of the bread-winner.

so… if this is you… if you’re being told this. if you feel like you have to accomplish this. if you are telling others this… here’s something for you: 

there will be stages in your life where “chores” are easily accomplished.

there will be days where the children are not in tears when daddy comes home.

there will be days where you are on top of every.single.thing. and you feel like a rockstar!! (and well you should!!)

but these days will not be your regular days. 

because you live in a house full of tiny humansor even one tiny human… or the person you are judging has a tiny human in their charge… or you are just living LIFE and life is messy, and crazy, and unpredictable, and never the same for everyone… 

so most days will have tantrums. and it’s okay to cry too. 

will have questions. it’s okay to not know the answer. 

will have you on the edge of losing your temper. keep breathing.

will have you clinging to the cross until you swear there are blisters in the skin. keep clinging.

will have someone telling you that you are doing something wrong. keep doing what you know is right.

and sometimes, bite your tongue and let them continue in the ignorant belief that it is possible to have the family from the movies great the husband at the door as he comes home from work to a glistening house and a wife with perfect hair, clothes, and children.

if you’re married, then he’s your partner. they’re his kids too and you are supposed to help bear each other’s burdens. not put on some falsehood of what your day has been like.

if you can do more at the end of the day than just keeping the children alive…

and separating them when they are trying to kill each other…

and changing their diapers…

and feeding them…

and being the nap monitor…

and the juice distributor…

if you find time to fold a couple shirts and throw a load in the wash (with or without moving it to the dryer)

if you can find time to unload and reload and unload the dishwasher again…

or sweep the floors…

or just brush the crumbs with your toes so the floors don’t look quite so dirty…

if you manage to get the kids dinner made before the end of the day…

and possibly all kids naked and in the beginnings of bedtime routine…

then girl, you just did something that was AMAZING … and quite possible not even what an everyday mom is capable of doing!! but don’t feel like it’s a requirement.

or like your worth as a mother or a wife is found solely in what you can check off of a chore list by the end of the day… 

be real people

your worth as a mother and a wife are found in the character of the children you are raising…

and witnessing the fruit of your labor sometimes takes a while…

most likely anything that you have done today that is truly, honestly, worth anything…

you probably won’t even see…

but that doesn’t mean it isn’t there…

focus on raising your children the way you want them to go.

turn your gaze to your Father in Heaven and live all-guts-out-on-fire for Him.

anything else you get done along the way is not something you should gauge your worth by.

so please don’t. 

 

essentially tackling health part 1

so this is about essential oils. and health. and the fact that i started to have a sore throat yesterday. i honestly thought i was just going hoarse and nothing to be concerned about…
and then oh hoh hoh. did i wake up to p.a.i.n. this morning! like oh my gosh my lymph-nodes are swollen, head is congested, throat on raw fire, i am going to die: pain.

enter essential oils.

first, Lemon.
around ears and on lymph-nodes. sigh. and oh my gosh it was working. instant depressurization in head. pain level everywhere going down.
and excitement as i pick up the next bottle.

On-Guard.
two-three drops on bottoms of feet applied neat. (this is a hot oil, so dilution is recommended for sensitive skin with carrier oil such as fractionated coconut oil or olive oil) but yes, the article i read gave warnings but that person had applied it neat (without carrier oil) and hadn’t had any side-effects.
soooo… i did it too. oil on bottoms of feet, socks on to try to keep oil from going all over the floors.
relief continued to flood my body as i headed down to the diffuser to put in 3 drops of On Guard oil.

i repeated everything with my congested and coughing four-year-old. diluting the On Guard on the feet and also applying diluted Breathe to his chest.

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and ohhhhh glory is all i have to say about that.

throat is still a little sore and i probably need to gargle with Lemon/On-Guard combo- but right now i am curled up in bedroom sanctuary chair and reveling in my victory over these sickly symptoms.

will be back with more on these little beauties later, but just wanted y’all to know what’s going on in this world of oils and our attempts at healthier living! 😉