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Sunday, November 15, 2009

Seriously?

I am speechless.  That doesn't happen often!  What happened that brought on this amazing phenomenon?  A discussion on Facebook of all things.

A friend asked a question about a performer that is very popular right now.  Lady Gaga.  ugh, Even her name is stupid.  (Robin, I know you like some of her stuff!)  The question was posed if her music-if you can call it that-is appropriate for teenagers.  I'm thinking that that is a no-brainer.  Right?  Apparently not.

The comments were more of the line of thinking that we can not shield our children from society.  And if they have good influences then this kind of thing will not influence them.  WHAT????

I'm pretty sure that that is one of the reasons that our children are turning away from the Faith when they get older.  If parents are letting them listen to this kind of thing long enough, their thinking is going to become twisted to the world's standards.  It won't matter how strong the parents influence is; in the end sin has been given a foothold.  But, why would we as parents' want to let the world influence them in this way if we can prevent it?

Isn't it our job as parents to shield them from things for as long as we can until they are mature enough to handle it?  Aren't we supposed to guard and monitor their lives so that they are protected because we have experienced things they haven't?  Isn't that the point of having someone more experienced in your life; so that you can learn from their mistakes and successes?

Saying that worldly music and movies won't have an effect on our children if they have other Godly influences to counteract them is ludicrous.  If that were true, then why does the Bible say that "Bad company corrupts good morals"?  1 Cor. 15:33  That seems to tell me that if you are in the 'company' of bad things long enough, you will be changed for the worse.   Can a man watch pornography as long as he is going to church and doing a Bible Study?  He has Godly influences, doesn't he? 

Sounds stupid, doesn't it?  That's because it is worldly thinking.  The world says that it doesn't matter what you watch or listen to or read as long as you have other interests that are 'good'.  That is clearly wrong.

The Bible doesn't say to fill you mind with all kinds of things, good or bad, it says to fill them with good things.  "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things."  Philippians 4:8  That seems pretty clear to me.

I am a little worked up about this, as my dh will attest!  Our children rely on us to guide them and protect them.  Even if that means from themselves.



Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Blessings with Lessons in Disguise

WARNING:  Total honesty here...I'm just sayin'!

Since I have had Bronchitis and Mono, I have been pretty much in bed or home-bound for the last three to four weeks.  I have been sleeping most days.  It has been a challenge to get school done.  That's probably putting it mildly, but we are working on it.  We are doing enough, for now.  I am itching to get back to our normal schedule and normal life.  But it is happening much more slowly than I care for.  If I do too much, I end up in bed for most of the next day trying to recover.  I'm not good with pacing myself!

This extended illness has been good for a few things, however.  One is that my girls are learning to help around the house more and to seek out ways to help before they are asked.  It is not an easy lesson and it is slow going, but they are growing in this area.

Another area of growth has been for all of us, but me especially.  When I got sick my good friend, Amy, scheduled friends to bring me meals. Honestly, it was a situation that I was uncomfortable with.  Not because I was afraid of the food that people would bring; but because of the attention it would draw.  I don't like being the center of this kind of attention.  It is hard for me to admit that I have needs and then to let someone else fill or provide for them.

I don't have any problems jumping in to help someone else and actually enjoy it quite a bit.  It is an honor and a blessing.

When it comes to me and my needs, it feels like a burden that is unfair to share with others.  It feels like too much to ask for others to help or help carry the burden with me.  It also is humbling. 

I don't consider myself that prideful.  That is until something like this happens.  When Amy emailed me with the schedule of meals, pride reared its ugly head and embarrassment washed over me.  I was embarrassed that all these people were bringing us food and embarrassed that I couldn't take care of my family on my own.  Pride.

I swallowed my pride and after the first couple of ladies brought food, an interesting conversation occurred with the girls.

One of them asked why all these people were bringing us food.  They said that it was embarrassing.  That stopped me in my tracks.  Had the way I had been acting been that evident that they were picking up on it?  Of course it was!  I had some backtracking to do and also some humble explanations to lay out.

God was working on my heart to show me that this was exactly how The Body was supposed to work.  I was willing to work in this way for others but was unwilling to let others bless me in that way.  Why? 

Because of pride. 

Ugh.

I am thankful for this lesson from a loving Father.  It has been sweet to watch the faces of the ladies blessing our family and sweet to watch the girls accept these blessings with quiet and humble hearts.  These amazing ladies have blessed me and my family beyond what words can describe.

What a beautiful thing to be a part of The Body. 


Sunday, November 1, 2009

Soccer. Need I say more?

At the soccer games yesterday, I really tried to behave myself.  What that really means, is I tried to relax and not get worked up!  I sat for EVERYTHING and tried to doze between quarters.  I was completely exhausted by the end of the fourth game, but it was worth it.  The girls really wanted me there and they had a great day and had a lot of fun.

Except for...

The U8 game.

Our 7yo plays soccer for the fun of it.  Nothing else.  She likes to chit-chat and run around like a silly person.  Seriously.  That's just her personality.  She is a happy-go-lucky kind of girl and nothing bothers her too much. 

Until two weeks ago.  She was in a soccer tournament.  Now, their team is young and very inexperienced and sometimes they can't remember to run after the ball!  It's pretty entertaining.  They have a good time and we get a cick out of watching it.

At the tournament they played three games.  They lost all three, badly.  They had a ball doing it!  i don't think they even noticed that they had lost all the games.  They are a precious group of girls.

The last game, however, was a different story.  The other team was SERIOUS about soccer.  They seemed to be out for blood.  Elbows were flying and shirts were being grabbed and pulled.  It was a mess.  The other team quickly racked up points and it was obvious that there was no hope of our team winning.  Still the pushing continued.  It got bad enough that our girls stopped going for the ball. 

At one point our dd was getting elbowed repeatedly, she kept fighting to get the ball, but when the elbow landed in her stomach she stopped.  She immediately came over to me, sat down and started bawling.  She said that she wasn't going to play anymore because the other team was being mean and the ref wasn't calling it. 

She was right.

The sideline ref saw it, tried to intervene, but nothing worked.  I made her go back and finish the game, but she never really engaged again.

Fast forward to yesterday.  Our team was playing and we could tell that today was the day they had picked for socializing and not for playing soccer!  They were giggling and having fun, the other team was growling.  Literally!

The pushing started.  Our girls backed off because they just don't play that way.  It got worse and I was grousing.  I shouldn't have, but I did.  I could see the tears and frustration building and it irritated me.  Why can't the ref teach these young girls how to play or not play?   That's what they are supposed to do.

Ugh

Well, a mother from the other team was standing beside me and she started, or tried to start, an argument.  I am not kidding.  She started in about how their team wasn't the only one pushing.  I quickly agreed and said that both teams needed to be called for pushing and instructed on the rules of the game.  I thought that would be the end of it.  OH NO!!

She went on to say that our girls were pushing just as much and that only one of theirs was.  I again said that all the girls needed to be told not to push because when girls start pushing out of frustration, that the ref needed to intervene.  She started getting angrier and kept saying the same things over and over again.  I finally said that I didn't want to argue with her and that all the girls needed to be taught not to push.   I then pretended that she wasn't there anymore.

Now, I am not a competitive person.  There are times, that I can pull it out and be competitive, but on the whole, I just like to play and have fun.  The same goes for the kids.  If they play their best and lose, I am okay with that.  As long as they did their best.

But when my sweet natured, non-confrontational dd is in this position I get hoppin' mad!  I didn't care that we were losing, I cared that she doesn't want to play anymore.  We have had the whole talk about soccer being a contact sport and that you will fall down or get pushed sometimes.  But when it is intentional, that's hard to explain.  She is such a black and white thinker that it frustrates her that the rules are being broken.  (sounds like her mama!)

In the future, I will endeavor to keep my big mouth shut.  Really, I will try.  I may have to put a muzzle on, but I'm going to try.  :)
It was a very long day.  I went home and didn't do anything else for the remainder of the day.  This morning, I'm still tired.  All the girls played like there was no tomorrow and had a ball doing it.  What more can you ask?