All People Matter

people-eiffel-tower-lights-nightI have been troubled by all of the violence and terror in the world the last few months. I’ve started to write many different pieces about it. But before I finish one, another tragedy occurs. Horrible tragedies here in the Pacific Northwest; across the world in Paris; images of refugees with no home or hope; the shooting in San Bernardino; a presidential candidate promoting racism; and just today the closing of schools in LA due to bomb threats. The list could go on and on. Honestly, at times it makes me really frightened for the future world my children are growing into.

Social Media has made this world smaller. We have access to all of those images that we can’t ignore. Or look away from. Some of us share posts or tweets out of outrage. Some out of heartache. Others add the profile overlays to stand in solidarity. I know I did for Paris. Then others mock those who did, because they didn’t change their picture for every other tragedy.

I have even had people unfriend or unfollow me because apparently I didn’t react quick enough to respond to tragedy. Or stand up strong enough with my Christian values to affirm refugees, gay marriage, black lives or Muslims. I have such a mix of feelings over all of this. Not the issues, but the judgment of others. I seek first to understand, then to find common ground.

Here’s what I believe the common ground should be: all people matter. All people were created in the image of God. All people have value. Whether they’re from my part of the world or the slums of a foreign country. Gay or straight or somewhere in the middle struggling with their identity. All people including all the beautiful colors of skin and hair and eyes. And all the people that worship differently than I do. We all matter. We all sin. Yes, some have done horrendous acts that I can’t even begin to explain or understand. Yet I trust that God will judge them appropriately. That is not my job to judge anyone and I don’t want to live in fear of anyone.

It also doesn’t mean I passively sit or live a life of apathy. Just because I haven’t taken a stand for every cause on social media doesn’t mean I don’t care. I choose not to engage in a lot of rhetoric in social forums. Again, not because I don’t care, but because I would prefer to have a face to face discussion, so that you understand the heart of love behind all I do.

Most of these face to face discussion happen in my own home.

Because this is where changing the world starts. It starts with our own kids and raising a generation that knows what it means to be loved, listened to, cared for. A generation that knows how to love, care for and serve others.

Let it also start with you. Start the change in your own life, in your own home. Have discussion about the hard things. Decide together as a family what you can do, how you can give, where you can serve, or how you can pray. Trust, grow, be stretched, be challenged, and then model the same for your kids. Model mercy, compassion, and justice. Be honest with them when you don’t understand, when your heart hurts, when you’re confused, and even when you’re angry about social issues. Seek answers. Have discussions. Find answers in reputable sources. And still model love. Let it all show love.

Also, let’s let Facebook be the place to share the bright spots of our day and funny pictures of cats. Because funny pictures of cats make me laugh. Okay?



act justly, love mercy, walk humbly

Micah 6:8




Angry Mom Rant

My daughter has been the victim of cyber bullying. Hopefully you are aware of what that is. It’s whearphones-friends-hand-3086-525x350en others use various social media platforms to intimidate or harass others. It’s become something teenagers of this generation have to deal with. Teens will take odd pictures of others and post them with vicious comments. Or they’ll start an “overheard at (fill in the name of your school)” and post anonymous comments about others. Or they’ll spread gossip like wildfire via text or other platforms.

That’s the technical, informational side about cyber bullying. The human mom answer goes something more like this: It’s when selfish brats who can’t say anything to my child’s face make and post comments to make themselves feel better by making my daughter feel awful. And my human mom reaction is more like this: I want to show up at that school or event and tell off that little twerp, because they have no idea what they’re talking about and even less of an idea of the damage they are doing. Then I want to find their parents & school administrators and FREAK OUT ON THEM! Seriously freak out!!

Then the Holy Spirit intercedes. Don’t you love it when He shows up?? I mean really! I want to freak out but He’s all calm and gentle and like “No… let’s look at this from another perspective. Is it going to help your daughter feel better if you freak out on someone? I mean you can, there are just real consequences there. So instead, let me calm you both. Let me comfort you. Let me offer words that you can speak to your daughter. Let me be here with you now.  Let me give you the eyes of Christ in this moment.”

I’m instantly reminded of our identity. We are daughters of the King on Most High. We are holy, chosen and adopted, set apart for His glory. He created us, knows us, fights for us. We can rest in that.

So I hold my daughter, while she’s in tears, and gently remind her of her identity. “Those girls don’t get to define who you are or who you will be. What they say has no bearing on who you were created to be. I know the words hurt now, but God is so much bigger than those words. You know who you are. You are His. He is with you. He will fight for you. They don’t get to mess with you!”

Friends, our kids have so much to battle in this world. Rather than learning to fight in the same ways as this world, be reminded that we were made for more. This isn’t our final home. Other people don’t get to define who we are in this world. Remember that you too are a child of the King on Most High. You too are wanted, redeemed, restored through Jesus. Any time you forget or question it just ask the Holy Spirit to remind you. You don’t have to worry about getting even or proving a point. Let Father God vindicate HIS sons and daughters.

Sharing Faith in a Social Media World

Do you overtly share your faith in your social media outlets?? That is something I struggle with. I’ve talked with others who also struggle in this. Sometimes I feel like my personal Facebook page is not the right place to post all of my ministry and faith thoughts. Sure, I post some things, but I guess I sort of soften it sometimes. Make it a bit more palatable for those non-christian friends.

coffee-iphone-macbook-air-166-825x550Maybe I’m completely wrong in this, but let me pour out some of my thoughts. I want to live my life in such a way that I’m not causing stumbling blocks for others. I want to model Christ, without having to shout at others to do the same. I don’t want to be a modern day Bible thumper. I want to live my life to the fullest, sharing the special moments and times, including those moments where God is incredibly present. That is who I am.  I just want His light to shine through me.

I have had people unfriend me. Self proclaimed atheists. I wasn’t trying to convert them. I was a bit disappointed that they were quick to unfriend me at one mention of my faith. Hello, you know me, that’s who I am, why did you hang out with me in the first place then??

I have never unfriended someone because they don’t believe in God. I did block someone from seeing my posts though. That person is a very outspoken atheist who likes to bash on Christians. They had a rule if they saw three posts in their newsfeed about God, then it was all out war. Posts would follow with threads hundreds of comments deep. I didn’t feel called to engage in that. It was not a back and forth civil discussion. It was negative bashing. Maybe that was the wrong choice on my part. It was fascinating (or horrifying) to watch. God has given me enough to do daily that I just didn’t hear him asking me to enter that one.

Here’s what I did do with that situation: I committed to pray. Every time I see that person in my newsfeed, I pray for them. Just a quick, short prayer. “Jesus, bless this person. Continue to reveal yourself to them. Surround this person with your presence in every situation. Amen.”

And I suppose that’s similar to my prayer about my personal facebook page. “Jesus, bless these people I have as friends. Help me continue to reveal who you are. Let your light and love show through me. Help me to honor you in all I do. Amen”