Monthly Archives: September 2013

Aside

dead end alley

I heard Ne-No was a little hard on some of the Moms out there this week. Kids these days, I mean really. They will call you out, huh?!

{Truthfully, I’m still processing things about that post. It messed with me, even as I wrote it – mostly because I’m just as guilty as Ne-no’s mom – & I’m thankful the Lord opened my eyes to the issue. I hope you know it was just a creative way of expressing frustration with some parents using social media, without any consideration of the ones coming after us. It was not finger pointing toward anyone, and if anyone, a direct message to myself to really think before I put it out there. I feel a strong burden for protecting the younger generation, those who will never know life without social media.}

Speaking of the younger generation, can I just tell you what a delight it is to worship with and teach them each week at church? Good grief, they are such joy to me. I am continually amazed by their hearts for the Lord.

Yesterday was Sunday, simply a glorious first day of Autumn in our neck of the woods. As much as I love summer, and oh sister, do I love summer, I’m always thankful for that first crisp morning of fall.

Being Sunday, I taught those darling 4th & 5th graders during Sunday school time. I can tell you without a doubt, the Lord is raising up a mighty generation behind us. Those are some sharp cookies, people. They have a depth of understanding and a desire for His word that astounds me. The longer I teach these kids, the more I realize we need not underestimate this generation. They want the meat. They don’t just want the corny skits and coloring pages. These kids are facing challenges we did not face as young people. And I believe the Lord is equipping this generation with depth of insight to handle this broken world.

Ok, I digress.

So, yesterday I taught these (amazing) kids, and we were talking about having courage, and trusting God in the middle of a struggle. Referencing the passage from Numbers 13-14- Israel’s refusal to enter Canaan, the promised land – even though the Lord had told them with certainty it was theirs to possess. Although He had already told them it was theirs, they just had to go take it, they did not trust the Lord to really give it to them (they were afraid of the Canaanites, because they were bigger than the Israelites).

Wait a minute. Back up for a second, some of you may be lost…if you haven’t ever read this story…stop and do it now. Seriously, here’s the link. (We will wait for you. It is worth the five minutes, I promise, promise, promise!)

You back? Ok, good.

Do you know how many times I’ve been one of those stubborn Israelites, refusing to accept what God has promised in my life?

I spent too many years flailing. I hate that word, flailing. It just sounds weird when you say it out loud. And I wouldn’t use it, but it’s only appropriate in this case. I was that girl flailing around, drowning in two feet of water because I refused to stand up on the solid ground below my own feet.

Ever felt like that?

It’s a wonder John Lowe ever married me. Sister, I was some messed up when the Lord brought the two of us together. The Lord’s healing is whole, and complete, praise Jesus…but it took a long time for me to sense the healing work the Lord has done. I’m not proud of who I was, but I refuse to let the evil one shame me into thinking I’m not worthy of the forgiveness the Lord has mercifully given.  I love Luke 7:47, when Jesus says, “Therefore I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven…”

Thank you, Jesus.

In our messedupness (yep, I just made up a word there), do we believe God for the courage to face challenges? Do we believe God for the power to heal our brokenness? Do we trust Him when He says our sins are forgiven?

I asked the kids yesterday, and I think it bears asking you today…In what area(s) of your life is the Lord asking you to trust Him right now? Do we trust the Lord to deliver that which He has already promised us?

I don’t know about you, but I trust Him more when I stop to remember the places He brought me out of. I heard a pastor say recently, “We would doubt less if we remembered more.”

Before we close, I’ve gotta share a place in scripture that reminds me of that quote…I don’t quote from The Message much, but I couldn’t resist how this particular passage reads….

God rescued us from dead-end alleys and dark dungeons. He’s set us up in the kingdom of the Son he loves so much, the Son who got us out of the pit we were in, got rid of the sins we were doomed to keep repeating. ~Colossians 1:13-14

Don’t you just love that?! I know, I know, you didn’t all come from physical dead-end alleys and dark dungeons (but you better believe there are some of us who did), yet there have been plenty of gut-wrenching, joy killing, life strangling issues He has rescued you and me from. Praise Jesus.

{Don’t even get me started on the “sins we were doomed to keep repeating.” That’ll just wreck my mascara totally, and I’ve gotta take Lucy the Wonderdog to the vet in a few minutes.}

Trust Him with whatever area of life you are needy, sister. He doesn’t mind needy. It’s where His glory shines the brightest.

He loves you so much.

~kristi

Dead End Alleys

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Aside

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Dear Mom,

So, this may be a little awkward, but we’ve gotta talk.

Easy there…before you start jumping on the couch like Tom Cruise did on Oprah and hurt yourself…You’ve probably noticed I don’t talk to you much these days.

I don’t text you back, and I don’t call you enough. I know, I know, it “drives you crazy”. When we are together, I’m quiet. You always ask how my day was, but I don’t tell you (or better yet, I don’t tell you the truth).

See, Mom, here’s the deal.

I don’t trust you.

I know, that’s harsh.

{But I don’t.}

And I’m really not trying to be disrespectful here.

It’s just that I’ve realized that anything I tell you can (and most likely, will) end up on Facebook. Like the time I thought my English teacher was cute. Or when my stomach hurt, and you told 700 people you thought I was constipated.

Really?

Every time I share a picture with you, you filter the crap out of it and post it on “The Instagram” (why you add “The” to Instagram I’m still not sure).

And as if that isn’t bad enough, some of the kids at school started teasing me about the speech impediment I had as a child. How did they know about it?

Your blog.

Some punk found a link to it on your Facebook page and started reading the old blog entries…apparently you gave them a lot of material. They knew I sucked my thumb every night, even as a 4th grader, and I snuck into y’all’s bed when I got scared. Oh, and how about the time I wet my pants in 1st grade? I had even forgotten about that until they so kindly reminded me. Then there was the time I cried when I watched Finding Nemo. They had a field day with that one. They call me “Ne-no” in the locker room now (thanks to the speech impediment post).

There is no way it ever occurred to you that your blog posts would be read by adolescent kids on iPhones at a lunch table 10 years later.

But here we are. And now your sweet Ne-no’s whole childhood is lunch room fodder.

We discussed a word in Sunday school recently.

Discretion.

My teacher read the bible verse…

Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout is a beautiful woman who shows no discretion. ~Proverbs 11:22

Mom, you are beautiful. I’ve always thought you were. I love that you take care of yourself, and that you dress like a lady. {Some of my friends’ moms dress like hookers. Please don’t go through some crisis and try that, ok? You’re cute like you are.}

But Mom, I’ve lost trust in you. I never know what you are going to share with other people.

Sometimes, I just want to be with you.

YOU.

Without the phone, the camera, The Instagram.

Moments just between you and me. Conversations that make me think. Memories not cheapened by “comments” and “likes”.

Do you think maybe we could get a cup of coffee and not tell everyone where we went? Could we laugh about a joke and not share it on Facebook? And sometimes, let’s take a selfie of you and me and…gasp!…just keep it to ourselves. Maybe you could set it as your home screen on your phone instead of your profile picture?

I need you in my life without feeling like I’m being exploited. I want to hear “I love you” from your mouth, not my Newsfeed. If you are proud of me, look me in the eyes and tell me. Don’t post some ridiculous sappy soliloquy and tag me in it. I need to be able to spill my day while you fix your amazing meatloaf and mashed potatoes without you posting a pic of the moment on The Instagram.

Have a little discretion, Mom.

I am learning how to navigate life by watching you. I need you to lead me with wisdom. And even when I roll my eyes, deep down, I want you to encourage me to live with integrity, draw healthy boundaries and teach me how to take care of myself. I want you to be a safe place I can come when I’m struggling, in the midst of figuring out who I am. I learn more from your quiet strength than any rant or blog post.

I love you Mom. Thanks for listening. And Mom, one more thing. I really meant the part about you being beautiful. The picture of the pig up at the top was Kristi’s idea, not mine.

Love, Ne-No

 

 

***Just a little creative writing this morning from the viewpoint of an adolescent (nothing I wrote was factual to my knowledge…any coincidences are just that.) Might we graciously consider our children before we post things on social media? Our words are public for all the world to see now, and in the future. -kristi

Dear Mom…