Thought of The Day
It’s becoming extremely clear that in today’s culture being a Christian is perceived as being a bad person. Christians are looked at as unloving and judgmental. We are thought to be ignorant and naive. I’m torn on why this is. In part, I think it’s because many of the most outspoken “Christians” are such things. They forget that Jesus hung out with the people that the religious folks looked down on. He chilled with real, normal people and was a friend to them and treated them with respect. Some Christians seem to think that God and science are not compatible either. They think that any kind of evolution cannot exist and they argue against evolution because of their faith in God. I see all science and development of life as a work of God, though. I see the progress of lifeforms through generations as his art. I dont think the two concepts- science and God are mutually exclusive events but that the complexity of the world is just more evidence in a God who is the greatest chemist and physicist that has ever existed. They take the scripture on creation to mean a literal 7 days and argue the world is only 2,000 years old, instead of remembering that to God “a thousand years is like a day and a day is like a thousand years”. Each one of those 7 “days” could have been a billion years each in our way of marking time.
But then I also remember that Jesus was hated as well. He wasn’t persecuted and nailed to a cross for no reason. He was not always the most popular fellow either. So maybe times aren’t so different. Being a follower and believer in Christ means being hated. Depending on the day- that can mean being hated by the super religious or it could mean being hated by the world.
Thought of the Day
I used to argue in defense of circumcision. I admit, part of my reasoning was simply that circumcision was normal to me. I didnt know what an uncircumcised penis looked like and I was carrying around a lot of false myths about cleanliness. My biggest reason for arguing in defense of circumcising boys was that it was Biblical. When I heard activists call circumcision mutilation, It made me really angry and threw me even more into defense. God would never command people to mutilate their babies! As time went on and I learned more and more about the actual purpose and functions of the foreskin, I started leaning further and further away from my support of it. Putting newborn babies under a knife for a cosmetic purpose definitely didn’t sit well with me. My only hang up still was the history of the Old Testament. That when I discovered that circumcision has changed over years. It is not the same procedure as it was 2,000 years ago. Circumcision did not mean removal of the entire foreskin during biblical times but actually meant to nip the tip of it, which would make a blood sacrifice and cause a scar to form but the foreskin remained intact! From that moment on I knew I never again would be in support of circumcision in baby boys.
for more info on what the Bible says about circumcision and the history and development of what circumcision entails Click Here.
Thought of the Day
I’m an overweight woman and this is something Ive struggled with my entire adulthood. Not just physically, with my weight going up and down, but emotionally. I regularly have to tell myself that my weight does not determine my self worth, that whether I am super model thin or the next seasons contestant on The Biggest Loser- I am the same person and my value does not change. It’s very difficult to think this way in a time where beauty is so highly valued and fat is not considered beautiful. I still hope to make my body healthier and be in better physical shape for my long term physical well being but I really hope that when my daughters grow up, they are confident and love themselves and feel worthy of love no matter how they look that day because they can remember their mom loving herself no matter her size.
Thought of the Day
I dont usually like being a Christian. Sometimes I wish I could just shake that part of myself off and walk away from it. It just does not work that way, though. I know Jesus is Lord of my life like I know my left leg is part of my body and that without him I risk eternal death. That isn’t a risk worth taking for me.
I know it can be an odd request but just take a moment to read and consider why I am so sick of my daughter being called “pretty”.
No, it’s not bad to be pretty, be called pretty, or call someone pretty but the word does make an impression and leaves behind a lesson in it’s tracks.
The lesson is, “Your looks matter most”.
You see, my daughter is called pretty constantly. Everywhere we go people stop her to tell her they like her looks. They mention her large blue eyes, her cute as a button little self, and her uniquely red hair. I’m sure many moms of girls experience this and it isn’t just mine but she just seems to attract attention everywhere we go. All these people have good intentions. Their hearts are in the right place. They think they are boosting her up, complimenting us, giving her a nice solid foundation of a self esteem. What they don’t always think about is that they are giving her a self esteem based purely off looks. Based purely on outward image. And being told 12 times per outing by strangers that you are visually appealing lets one know one thing- we judge others and ourselves on looks.
I know some people think I am being dramatic or extreme but imagine being a 4yr old. You have a mom and dad who tell you a handful of times per day that your health matters and that it’s good to be strong and that exercising your brain is crucial. But then you are told a dozen times per day… sometimes 2 dozen times in a day- by strangers, family, and friends that your looks are what they notice. Your looks is what they talk about. Your looks is what makes them want to praise you. Your looks is what stops them in grocery aisles. Your looks is what makes them want to talk to your mom. Your looks is what they are saying they wish they had too.
What do you think a 4yr old is going to take in? While health, intelligence, strength..ect.. is important- Pretty is what really counts and matters to others.
Not long ago we were at a park and my daughter paired up with an 8yr old girl and they quickly became playground buddies. At one point the girl told Eve that she looks just like the character Merida from the movie Brave. Eve’s response was this, “I really dont. My hair isnt the right red. and it’s not curly enough. and it’s not long enough.”
and the thing about this that really stood out to me was that Eve said this as if she fell short. She wasn’t “Merida enough” to really be told she was like Merida. And well.. she’s right… only the cartoon character Merida can be Merida and be exactly who Merida is. Eve is Eve… not Merida. But what happens when I translate that to her being called pretty? At what point does the same rational kick in that she already has when compared to a character?
But do I really compare to the standard of “pretty”?
While we may think we are building up her self esteem, I fear we are just building her up to feel meeting this standard is what matters and in the end- due to a culture with unrealistic expectations, anorexic models, photoshopped magazines, plastic surgery and professionally applied makeup that she will start seeing herself as falling short, like so so many of the females in the US who never feel good enough to really be pretty.
Instead of spending so much time calling her pretty, I wish people would stop her to compliment her taste in the books she picks out in the store. Or her energy. Or her wits. Compliment how smart she is after talking with her about science experiments or bugs. I know it comes more naturally to tell little girls they are pretty then it is to actually have to have a discussion with them and find their strengths but they are worth the time spent. If you talked to my daughter, you would know that she loves going hiking and that she goes running with her dad and that she (at only 4 1/2 yrs old and 28 lbs) has run a 5K in The Color Run. She is more than just red hair. She is a torch lighting the way for girls everywhere to be bold and strong and I never want her to think she is any less based on a scale of pretty.
While talking with my family doctor we got into discussing medications, effectiveness vs negative side effects. He looked at me and said, when using any kind of medication, whether pharmaceutical or “natural”, the more effective and well working of a product it is, the more one has to worry about what other consequences it will have because the more effective the drug, the more effective the negative consequences too.
I really appreciated this perspective and it wrapped up my feelings so well on vaccines. Yes, vaccines may work. They really do keep the “oh so dangerous” chicken pox rates down to a minimal but what does it cost us? What will the penalty be for injecting a foreign object into our bodies? That’s why, again, we need to weigh it. Is the vaccine worth the risks it comes with? Is the illness it protects from worse than the consequences the vaccine could cause?
When it takes a minimal of 20 years of a vaccine on the market just to get a slight insight of it’s true effectiveness and side effects, there are a lot of unknowns out there right now. With 4x more vaccines given to children now than in the 1980′s, we just have to sit and wonder. We may not have many cases of mumps, measles or rubella but what will we end up with? Maybe it will be nothing… maybe it will be huge spikes in autism, or adhd, or seizure disorders, or autoimmune disorders.