Uncategorized

I’m so Pretty

Recently I was listening to “Betcha Gon’ Know” by Mariah Carey. It was the version that features R. Kelly. It made me think about how R. Kelly is now known for abusing women and how many were pushing for the mute R. Kelly movement, among other celebrities that are outed as abusers or pedophiles. I see why people want to shame these people and want to take away their star power. However, there are abusers all around us. There’s millions probably billions of people that abuse other people but we are only aware of the cases that make the headlines, nationally or locally. If we knew what literally everyone was up to in their spare time no one would be allowed to do anything in the court of public opinion. It seems that we have entered a new era in history. Pedophilia and abuse against women in general is taken more seriously in some ways. Despite the “anything goes” culture, the “consent” culture, there seems to be thirst to know the truth even about our supposed heroes or favorite celebrities. I cannot emphasize enough though that it shouldn’t surprise you that the World is busy being the World. That is, if you’re a Christ follower.

In Genesis 6:9, the Bible tells us that “Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God.” He [and his immediate family] was the only one selected to survive the Great Flood. Literally, no one else.

As far as God was concerned, the Earth had become a sewer; there was violence everywhere. God took one look and saw how bad it was, everyone corrupt and corrupting—life itself corrupt to the core. Genesis 6:11-12 MSG

Further in Genesis 18, the Bible tells us that Abraham interceded for the town of Sodom. He asked if God would spare the city if fifty righteous people are found and God said he would. However, I think Abraham knew there wasn’t fifty righteous people so he kept bargaining for less. He stops at ten. He asks God if he would spare the city if there are ten righteous people found and God gives His word, “for the sake of ten I will not destroy it.” We read just one chapter later that God did not find ten righteous and only allowed Lot, his wife and two daughters to flee as God rained on Sodom and Gomorrah sulfur and fire from Heaven. Out of the four fleeing, three made it to the next town.

Skipping ahead to the book of Daniel, we learn about a young man named Daniel that was trafficked to Babylon after Nebuchadnezzar took over Jerusalem. Daniel became known for maintaining his purity in the midst of the Babylonian culture. Daniel refrained from the foods and drinks they served as to not defile himself. God gave him favor and Daniel was allowed to not partake in the lifestyle. Daniel continued to see favor throughout his life while living in a different kingdom.

Just as in the times of Noah, Lot and Daniel- these men were counter-cultural. Within their generations and throughout history, their names and stories were written down to be known forever for their righteousness. These are just three examples, but three out of the billions of people that have gone to the grave before us and will go after us… THREE stands out to me.

We are living in modern day Babylon or Sodom or Gomorrah. These cities are basically cliché in 2019. But if you are a Bible reader, you need to acknowledge the time in which we live. Our culture is a secular one. Our country didn’t begin that way but as history repeats itself, Secular is what we have turned into. That is why there is so much hostility towards the Christian life. Real Christians standing for Biblical Truth in the Post Modern Culture.

You’re probably wondering when I’m going to explain how I’m so pretty and what that has to do with R. Kelly, historical and biblical references.

[I apologize if you’ve lost interest already. Context is one of my top strengths and I feel compelled to give the context to help lead you from one idea to the next. It’s just how my mind works! ]

While we live in Babylon just as Daniel did, we are called to stand out. We are not to participate in everything that the opposing culture offers. Daniel could have forgot his identity and dismissed his God but he did not. He could have sold out to the dominate culture, a foreign culture. Time and time again God warned his people to not worship other gods or idols. To not become like those around them. In the Old Testament, God very clearly gave those instructions repeatedly. In the New Testament, God gave us his only son to give us the grace that we might finally obey his commands. He allowed Jesus to come to love us by allowing us to see our hearts are knitted together with His. That we see ourselves and others with His gracious loving eyes. We have to distinguish what is the culture permit and what does God command? They should not be the same. We are to pursue Christ and aim to be Holy not assimilate to a culture that rebels and rallies against our God. It can feel uncomfortable but if our eyes are on eternity with Christ, saying no to permissive cultural practices should become easier over time.

Earlier that day I was running errands. I went to a Target for one thing. That one thing was not in the store so I decided to walk around a bit. Dangerous, I know! I walked through the women’s clothing, accessories, bedding, back through the accessories and women’s clothing. I tried on a lot of sunglasses and touched many handbags. I left the store only buying one t-shirt!

As I was driving away, I began to think about how much I desire to buy new clothing and accessories. How much I desire to join in the beauty and fashion trends taking place. How the pull of obtaining more clothes, more accessories, longer lashes, specific nude colored lipstick permeate my mind. I follow a lot of online boutiques on social media so I constantly see the clothes I don’t have and decide very often that I need thirty new tops every month. Social media is now interwoven with ads of all types. These ads are catered specifically for you through algorithms. Its easy to get caught up in striving to look a certain way or follow current trends.

I often feel I need to be prettier. Prettier and prettier. I have to achieve more as far as appearance. I have to improve my appearance. I have to aim to look better than I do today. Its feels like a beating drum…. Prettier….prettier….prettier. A pounding drum.

For men, it could be you feel you need to make more money, improve your wages, get a bigger paycheck. More money…money….money. A pounding drum.

I then wondered what if I replaced that beating drum with the beating drum of God’s love? What if I put that appearance drum on mute. I believe I would hear the pounding drum of God’s fierce love. I Love You. I Love You. I Love You. DEEPER. FIERCER. That sound would be overwhelming and no other sound could replace it once I heard it truly.

It made me think of how I long for a husband. A husband that would take delight in me. That would be excited when I walked into a room. Or if I were doing something like the washing dishes a very mundane activity. My back is towards him as I zone out in the task before me. He, on the other hand, very much intently watching me. Radiating beautiful thoughts towards me.

So, if I take this vision and transplant it on the Lord…

Can I fully grasp how much he loves me already? How much it isn’t about my appearance? The clothes I wear, the makeup trends I choose to follow or reject, my hair style, my weight. When I catch a glimpse of myself in a reflective surface and instantaneously think “ugh,” when I don’t measure up to the standards I decided were important… NONE of these influence God’s love. God has been radiating beautiful thoughts on to me since before he knit me together in my mother’s womb. For every beat of “be prettier,” God beats “I LOVE YOU” louder, “I LOVE YOU DEEPER,” “I LOVE YOU FIERCER”….its a beat more steady and full than our own heartbeat. Its a rhythm with origins in Heaven that God gave us the grace to tune in to.

Havilah Cunnington posted this the other day on her Instagram. I thought it fit perfectly into the revelation I had.

Related Reading:

Sister, Your Worth is Not Found in Your Size

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hookup culture, Men, Transformation, Women

Single Flamingle

 

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What’s a Christian girl to do these days? I’m sure I’m not the only one that follows different Christian social media accounts that offer relationship advice related to marriage, dating and singleness. I really do appreciate sites likes these but sometimes, I pass by an article that seems to be offering the same information just recycled by another eye catching headline.

Much of the advice for single people (women) is written by a 28 year old woman who’s explaining how she waited so long to finally getting married. Then she goes into to tell us single women on how to spend our single years serving God (because we have so much more free time compared to someone that is married). This involves improving your financial situation, eating well, spending time with your family and friends, serving in ministry and combating lust and exercising purity. Practical advice is staying away from Rom-Coms or movies that get you hot and bothered or hosting dinner parties with your friends!

No need to read further because I just compiled all the Christian single girl advice on the entire internet!

Please feel free to click out of this if you literally haven’t heard that advice and it is news to you. It is good advice. It really is! BUT… it falls flat on an almost 34 year old woman who has literally been working on those talking points. I did the Dave Ramsey class. I’m not a big spender but I do pay bills late. I knows this already. I try to make healthy food choices but I don’t always succeed. I bought a stationary bike that I have yet to use. Last year I bought workout clothes which also haven’t been used. I spend time with friends and family. I serve at my church and work in a ministry in my community. I don’t like Rom-Coms and I try to be careful with what shows or movies I watch. I’ve been celibate for almost 6 years now. Not a kiss, not a cuddle, not a THING! I have to invite Jesus into moments between myself and a nice set of biceps and traps.

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Aside from throwing dinner parties for your friends and trying to curb your lust, you’re also supposed to be letting yourself be found.

He who finds a wife finds what is good
    and receives favor from the Lord. Proverbs 18:22

I’m guilty of using this scripture as my soapbox. The scripture says he who finds a wife, which means I’m already someone’s wife and I need to act as such. This scripture also highlights the manner in which the man meets his wife, he finds her not the other way around. I’m sure through millennia, young women [and old] have been told to not pursue men. Generations have taken this advice and either been successful or not. Generations of women have also been manipulative and conniving in how they got their man. Most of us ladies know both types of women. Perhaps we’ve been both types usually unsuccessfully. If you’re reading this I’m guessing you’re a woman that is following Christ and wanting to do things His way. Your way didn’t work. If you’re like me, you were once convicted of behavior that was not honoring to God and so you stopped doing those things.

When I began my obedience journey with Jesus, I bought a book that caught my eye- Girls Gone Wise by Mary Kassian. This book opened my eyes to a lot of unHoly behavior that I was doing. Putting a lot of work and wiliness in getting a guy to look at me. Putting on lip gloss slowly and seductively while I know he’s looking, positioning my body as I stand to draw attention to specific attributes and more. I strongly encourage any woman to read it. So after reading the book, I changed a lot of my ways. I stopped doing a lot things. I did this because I wanted to honor God and do His will, not lead men further from it.

I said goodbye to flirting, sex and situationships.

But what exactly did I say yes to? Courting? Dating? Letting God write my love story?

I guess so. But what is courting and how is it different than dating? How do I let God write my love story when it feels like He doesn’t even if have a pen and notebook to start?

When the response to, “I just feel invisible” is “God sees you.” It’s a fantastic revelation but I want to stare back into human eyes to feel connected.

Jesus “should be enough” but all I want is to hold a human man’s hand.

This is where Christian dating advice makes me roll my eyes. I can cook dinner, pay bills, read my Bible, go on a walk, get a massage, volunteer in the community and still feel the supernatural pull of Something More.

Some advice tells us to be content in the singleness season. Other advice uses Ruth and Boaz as some blueprint for how to get a man. Let him now you’re interested just like Ruth did. This is the least practical advice because I have no idea what the modern day equivalent of the threshing floor is. Most of us agree dating someone at the workplace is not a good idea. Other than that, do I sneak into a man’s bedroom while he sleeps after he’s had a few drinks and a big meal, lay at the bottom of this bed? I better have a good lawyer if I choose option B.

The point of Ruth and Boaz isn’t some cute Hallmark movie. It was to tell us about the good nature of Who was to come, Jesus. Aside from that, marriage throughout history was not of a Romantic value. Marriage was to bring security for families, property, and wealth. People grew to love one another out of service. Of course, people did have moving love stories. If you were lucky, you got to marry someone that you were excited to marry.

Fast forward to 2019: My parents aren’t arranging any suitors for me. I get to be excited about the person I get to marry. But what about this in between time?

Do I wait to be found? Do I put myself out there?

What does putting yourself out there look like? How do I maintain a Holiness about it?

Where can I go to increase my chances of being found? Where do men go?

Dating Sites vs. Meeting organically?

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I skip over more and more of these Christian and secular dating articles. No one has the perfect answer or the perfect solutions. I can do everything on their checklists and still go another year solo. I can be doing all the right things and still show up to another family holiday function with nothing in my arms aside from a hearty green bean casserole. To be honest, I’m pretty frumpy these days. Spring is coming, maybe the nicer weather will put me in a nicer mood. Probably not. I could wear more makeup more often. I could ease up a bit on the dry shampoo and actually wash and style my hair sometime. I could look people in the eye in the grocery store on occasion. I could smile more. I could do a lot things but if there’s no guy to be on the receiving end then whats the point?

God is going to have to be God.

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book review, Men, Women

Be Brave

I’ve been reading 100 Days to Brave: Unlocking Your Most Courageous Self by Annie F. Downs. Little did I know that this was the devotional I needed to be reading. I had searched through many devotionals on a website looking for the one with the “x” factor. Maybe it was the word Brave that stood out to me or the gold accent on the cover? Either way I instinctively knew courage was what I was after. Not that I’m a scaredy cat or live in fear of everything – because I don’t. My whole life is out of my comfort zone and I can look back on my life and see many times I have been brave. I can also look back on my life and see the many times I was not brave. I let insecurity and doubt shut me down. I can also look at my day to day, week to week life and see where I am not stepping up and out. I know God has many things planned for me on the other side of insecurity and doubt.

In the 100 Days to Brave, Annie challenges us to discover what our calling is and narrow it down into one sentence. I had been entertaining an idea like this but it’s been called a personal mission statement. It’s a statement that will give you purpose and direction for your life. Of course, I have over analyzed any idea I’ve had of what the statement would be. So when I read this challenge my brain went to work. For days it was in my peripheral but nothing came to the fore front. I’m called to… I’m called to….? On that Sunday right after worship at church, it came to me.

I’m called to… fortify the weak.

Fortify means to strengthen a place with defensive works so as to protect it against attack, strengthen or invigorate someone mentally or physically.

I reflected on this and could see how over the course of life (so far) I’ve done this in the positions I’ve held in and out of the workplace and within friendships. With a recipe of truth, compassion, and sass I’ve validated and challenged others in the most sensitive times in their life. Whether advocating for others in a court room or meeting, certifying that someone is not crazy for the how they’ve mismanaged their childhood trauma, offering effective solutions for other’s dilemmas, helping someone discern between the truth and a lie, not welcoming the status quo. I’ve heard many times from friends “you make me feel like I’m not crazy.” I used to think – people frequently feel crazy?

This doesn’t mean that I am perfect. I’m far from it. Hearing from the Holy Spirit what my calling is opens up my mind.

The other day I was also thinking of my assignment. I’ve decided there is a difference between your calling and your assignment. Your calling is your purpose. Your assignment is how you are to carry it out.

About a year or more ago, I felt this impression on me that I’m not assigned to minister to those in the church building. I’m not saying this absolves me from any serving that I am to do in my home church. I do serve in a couple of ways. However, there was a distinction I made regarding those already attending church and those lost in the world that don’t even believe they are worthy of salvation, even entering a church building any day of the week. Those so far gone they won’t attend a service or even dare ask God for anything. Those are the people I am assigned to.
I am to be the one that goes into the cave with a flashlight of the Gospel to meet people where they are in their deepest pit. I am to be a light that shines on them while we speak. A light that intrigues them. And when I walk freely out of the cave they’ll want to follow.

I’m drawn to the darkness, not to live but to rescue.

cave

 

For the past 10 years, my resume is filled with a variety of jobs. Topics of trauma, philosophies of care, emotional intelligence, trafficking, disorders & diagnoses, physical restraints, juvenile justice, criminology, addiction, self-harm, stages of change, abuse & neglect, sexual assault, domestic violence, CPS, probation, homelessness, and more – all saturate my mind every day. I see the world through these lenses.

I didn’t actually ask for this.

I’ve always been obsessed with the WHY.

Why do people do what they do?
What makes a criminal a criminal?
Why do people choose to do wrong?
How are they different from anyone else?

The Why is often a hard red pill to swallow. We are broken. We are fumbling in the dark with a blindfold on and ear plugs in. As Christians we are to introduce people to the spiritual realm. Ephesians 6:12 tells us there are two frequencies – flesh and blood, dark world –AND- rulers, authorities, spiritual forces in the heavenly realms.

Most people function in the flesh and blood. Everything changes when you tune into Heaven. You become acutely aware of the over developed disease of evil. You should be able to see and hear the enemy roaring, strangling and killing souls.

There are many theories out there, you can spend a lot of money hearing about them, taking exams and writing dissertations on them.

The ills of society, the brokenness of people won’t be answered by theories or a national organization or by a federal program. Those systems can bring awareness to the symptoms but they have no concrete solution.

The solution is Jesus Christ. When Jesus became my Lord, His ministry was put before me.

Love them and lead them back to me.

Loving like Jesus isn’t hard, loving like a human is hard because no one will meet our conditions 100/100.

God has given us special people to love.
-the homeless
-the unborn
-the military
-the developmentally disabled
-the sick
-those trapped in modern day slavery
-pedophiles, rapists
-pimps and johns
-children
-addicts, dealers
-parolees, probationers, felons, death rowers
-those in hospice
-post-abortive mothers and fathers
-the suicidal, the homicidal
-the abused, the raped
-the unseen and unheard
-the invisible

They are everywhere at all times. Your assignment is who God told you to love intimately and fiercely.

Ask Him right now. Who do you want me to love? Show me how to love them well. If you have yet to identify who God wants you to love, you are living in rebellion.

“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
-Matthew 22:36-40

You don’t want to face God and tell him that you spent your lifetime unburdened for the souls of others. You had an extra ticket to Heaven but you threw it in the trash. Be brave and send out invites on behalf of the Bridegroom.

 

Related Reading:

100 Days to Brave by Annie F. Downs.

100d

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Journaling, Uncategorized, Women

My Life is Not a Telenovela

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My life is not a telenovela and yours shouldn’t be either. I got tired of telling my friends stories of this guy and that guy. I also got tired of hearing their stories about this guy and that guy.

Did I tell you about X?

Did I tell you what happened?

Did I tell you what he text me?

Did I tell you what he did?

Did I tell you what he said?

Re-hashing whatever happened two weeks ago, bringing me up to date on what happened last week, and telling me what happened this week.

So he text me this.

I texted back that.

Then he said this.

So I said that.

Showing my friend text after text or just handing over my phone to let them read the entire thread themselves. Watching their face in anticipation.

Over analyzing every text, word, move from the flavor of the month guy.

So he text me at 8:52pm. So I saw it but didn’t reply until 9: 26pm. Then he said that. So I texted back and said that.

Over and over the same story lines, the same play by play rhetoric.

Still single.

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After reading Don’t Let Your Journal Turn Into a Soap Opera Drama from Girl Defined, I decided to look through old journals and find good examples of my stories. Though I have numerous journals through the past 10 years, 2008 was filled with drama and endless details of it. In 2008, I was 22 years old and had quit my job at a restaurant. I had been on a “break” from school and just spent my time going to parties and bars. Hopefully some of that explains a percentage of the drama. Remember my post, 21 Before 21? Yeah, I didn’t know any of those things yet! The following entries centered around three fellas over a two month time frame. I blacked out names of all involved to protect their identities.

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I had one thing right, “I’m crazy.” Shake your head because I’m shaking mine too. I actually blew up someone’s one phone at 3 am. I don’t remember that. I was “so mad cuz he didn’t try 2 come over” ???

I read these pages and more- shocked. I cannot believe I used to be that girl. I remember a lot of stories but apparently I don’t have enough storage space in my brain for al the other stories. I must be remembering the main headlines, the highlights, the bloopers. Pages and pages of who’s and when’s, the tiniest details of anything that happened. He didn’t call back. He didn’t respond to my text. He didn’t go to the party or that bar. Sad to say these stories did die down but just continued at a slower rate up until 2-3 years ago. Maybe you’ll think its lame but I can’t remember the last time I had a story to tell.

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These years have been the most peaceful years. I’m not worried or stressed about some guy, what hes doing or not doing. I’ve got no time to become a detective or private investigator. Investigating, scouring the internet to “figure” him out. I can no longer analyze a picture posted on social media and decipher text messages. I can no longer decode a guy’s behavior to “figure out” how he feels about me. We’re definitely not called to be play special investigator even though we make great ones!

scully

God wants our eyes on him. If we are playing detective on some guy, then our eyes are not on God. If you consider yourself a Christian girl or woman, you should not be obsessed [and don’t use your own judgement to discern if you are obsessed or not]. You’re just going to rationalize every move you make. Talk to a mature friend and ask her if you’re a bit obsessed, even just a little. God deserves our full attention and a full-time relationship. I don’t judge you, I struggle with this myself. But we have to stretch our understanding of relationship and love. It’s not just a Nicholas Sparks novel. Whether its God or a guy.

Here is 20 Important Bible Scriptures About Priorities-http://www.whatchristianswanttoknow.com/20-important-bible-scriptures-about-priorities/

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When it comes to relationships and love I have a new set of standards and guidelines, Proverbs 18:22 is verse that I firmly hold onto.

He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the LORD.

He who finds a wife….  I don’t need to be out searching my city for a man. I definitely need to be prepared to be found!

not She who figures out a man will get to marry him,

not She who finds a husband.

He who finds a wife… I need to be asking God to prepare me to be wife.

not he who finds some chick,

not he who finds some girl that figured him out, that solved his inner mysteries.

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Instead of filling our journals with endless and mindless details of who’s and when’s, let us allow God inside those pages. God is thee author of all things. He created us and knows who and what we need in our lives. He is not the author of confusion! If we have to spend hours deciphering the hieroglyphics of texts messages, online messages and overall messages that are being communicated by a guy- most likely God is not involved in that situation. When you leave God out of your relationships, you also leave out his protection and provisions. When you act as if you can figure it all out with God and continue towards unstable relationships, you will not have the appropriate foundation that will be a long-lasting, fulfilling relationship. Sure you may have a relationship, but it won’t be from God’s design or have  his co-sign and it will not be blessed. You’re out on your own, leaning on your own understanding. We are told to lean NOT on our own understanding in Proverbs 3:5.

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;

Trust in the Lord…

definition: one having power and authority over others. Welcome His authority over your life and know that you won’t have to strain and strive so hard for the right guy.

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Related Reading:: http://www.girldefined.com/journal-turn-soap-opera-drama

Related Music:  Write Your Story by Francesca Battistelli – https://youtu.be/ecV1NHmELuA

P.S. Don’t be this girl!

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The Cross, Transformation

the Purge

[to clear of something unclean or unwanted. to remove or eliminate. to rid (a person or thing) of something unwanted.]

I write this with hesitation. I don’t really want to write my story for all to see. Though the theme has saturated itself in my journals for years now. I am just Beautifully Broken. Put together on the outside. Adorned with lovely things. But inside this house, there is a dark room. A dark room where my soul has died more than once.
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There were times in my life that I walked into this dark room, gave the keys to someone else and allowed them to lock me inside. I became hurt, angry and bitter. Sometimes, they’d leave the keys in arms reach. After long periods of time, I’d take the keys and let myself out. I would give away the keys again and go back inside the room. Cry myself to sleep and ask myself Why does this happen to me?

I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature.For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.  For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. Romans 7:15-20

Finding this in the Bible was life changing for me. I was stuck on super-UNfun rollercoaster,  a merry-go-round of confusion, rejection, disappointment, heartache. I may have switched from the white pony to the giraffe to the zebra or even a unicorn, but it was the same ride. I AM NOT CRAZY. I AM CRAZY. I used to tell myself, I’m smart, I’m rational, why cant I figure this out? What is wrong with me?

If youre familiar with the Myers Briggs personality types, I am a INTJ. Introvert-Intuitive-Thinking-Judging. I needed to figure this out. I needed to find the problem and solve it. I needed it to make sense. But I could not make sense of my pattern of having sex with someone I knew did not care for me, value me, respect me, or love me. I could not make sense of walking right into the burning fire and being horrified at the 3rd degree burns. I could not understand my preaching, “I’m not your night-time plaything anymore” only to find myself in his bed yet again. My overwhelming insecurity drowning me two days later like clockwork. All the texts messages and phone calls that never came, that still haven’t because in a very twisted way, I am still waiting.
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Words unspoken, misunderstood texts, and consuming thoughts have turned to prayers but often I don’t know why I’m praying or who I’m really praying for. Me? Him? My prayers have been for God to take this away. For God to just take me away. For God to open his heart to me. For God to just open his heart to anyone. For God to snatch him up and run faster than he is running from Him. For God to come and fill me like I want to be filled by him.  They fluctuate and alleviate. I change my mind about 30 times a day. Another year is about to pass by and still this IT remains.

Its been a year and half since the last time, but I always analyze the years in between now and the beginning. When it began I was 21. This Elite Daily article sums up the state of mind I was in and how it all came to happen. They’re 6 Reasons Why You’re Only His Hookup, Not His Girlfriend caught me off guard this morning when I woke up. Reading through these main points had me feeling regretful.

  • You Enabled The Hook-Up Mentality
  • You Never Told Him What You Wanted
  • You Didn’t Make Him A Priority
  • You Ignore The Signs That He’s Emotionally Unavailable
  • Why Buy The Cow?
  • He’s Just Not That Into You

I enabled the hook-up mentality by trying to be the cool-independent, I Don’t Need a Man girl. I never told him what I wanted because I didn’t want to appear needy, and what if he says No? I didn’t make him a priority because I was afraid of getting to know someone that will hurt you anyway. I ignored the signs he was emotionally unavailable because I too, shut off my emotions. He didn’t want to commit because I never said he had to. Hes just never been that into me because if he wanted to be with me, he would.

Hard truths for sure. God can forgive you if you ask. Your life can change if you allow Him to change you. But some consequences remain. You will have to face problems you would not have had to face had you not sinned.

I receive frequent emails from a relationship-speaker of sorts after visiting his website and subscribing to the newsletter . In the email today, he discusses Common Mistakes Women Make When it Comes to Sex.

“Not saying anything about what it means for you to share yourself with him because you keep telling yourself that he feels the same way you do… and you assume he wants a relationship because he wants to sleep with you

· Not saying anything about your feelings or about wanting a relationship because you thought it might “weird him out” or make it awkward

· Not knowing exactly know how you feel and what sleeping with him will mean to you until AFTER you sleep with him and a whole rush of feelings hits you like a tidal wave

If you’ve ever felt hurt because you became physical with a man and he ended up not having an interest in dating or starting a relationship, then odds are you can look back and see that one or more of the above scenarios was at play.

Of course, it doesn’t seem like it’s you who is making a mistake in these situations. It feels like THE MAN you’re with is the one who obviously doesn’t get it, and is a player for not being ready for a relationship.”

This again had me feeling regretful. Being reminded of where I went wrong oh so many years ago. Being reminded of how far from close I am with that person. How I wish I hadn’t thought I could handle casual sex. Opening up to friends through the years, I always get the same look. A look of disbelief. No, not Liana. She’s the one that holds it together when everything else is falling apart. She’s got it going on. A degree, an admirable career field. She’s definitely not crazy. Smart, Beautiful, Strong. [I’m not bragging, I promise]. Maybe they say she could have anyone she wants. She could take her pick. Why is she stuck? Why can’t she see she’s worth it? I’ve given my friends the look and the same speech. Leave him alone. Don’t text him. You’re better than that. He’s not respecting you. You deserve much more. Its never made sense to me or them.
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So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God–through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in the sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.
Romans 7:21-25

What a wretched woman I am. Whats good in me is Christ. I do not have it all together. Jesus died on the cross for me. So I don’t have to be a slave to sin. A slave to hooking – up with a guy that has no love for me. A slave to insecurity and fear. A slave to madness. depression. self-sabotage. failure. Wars are raging against you and I. Ones we can’t always see until it’s too late and you realize you lost though you don’t recall ever enlisting in battle.
A year and a half of a type of sobriety. Everyday I fight thoughts that lead to a relapse. I desire so desperately to do the right thing. To honor God with my body and decisions. But the pull remains.

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“This can get to be a kind of relational cocaine. A woman gets to a place where she just can’t turn down the possibility of the sexual, emotional stroke that being with a man gives.”
&
“Allowing a man to enjoy sexual favor without risking real commitment in marriage invites him to remain a boy inside.”
Paula Rinehart- Sex and the Soul of a Woman

“1. Know Yourself And What You’re After
You said, “I have made the mistake of admitting to a friend that I have feelings for him.”
It’s NOT a mistake to share your feelings with a man. It IS a mistake to share your feelings with a man 1) too early and 2) in a negative context.
You set yourself up for failure by choosing and “tolerating” a situation that just doesn’t work for you.
That situation is being “ok” with a purely physical situation when in fact you need – and want – more.
Instead of being open with yourself about what YOU are truly after, you pursued this “friends with benefits” strategy to get things moving.
That’s why you’re freaking out.
You thought you could handle it. You thought you’d get something out of it. And for a minute, it was fun.
But then your feelings snuck up on you. Eventually you were reminded of what you’re really after with a man and what you value.
Right now you have two pictures in your mind: One picture is of this “casual” thing going on. And the other one is what you actually want. The two pictures are so radically different and far apart from each other, that it’s no wonder you’re acting “insane.”
Your expectations are completely out of line for what you’re ACTUALLY doing with this guy.
It’s time to stop creating situations in your life that you KNOW won’t make you happy or comfortable in the long run – even if they feel good in the moment.
2. Find Your Personal Standards… And Then Stick With Them
Starting things with a man in this “casual” way, is a SUREFIRE way to ruin your odds of creating something more meaningful in the future.
I’m a guy. I know.
But, more importantly, getting into a “casual” situation with a man you might want to date more seriously and exclusively, has a VERY HIGH potential to make you FEEL AWFUL.
So…
Unless you’re one out of a hundred thousand women that gets “swept off her feet” by an open, caring, great communicator, who makes moving into a committed relationship effortless… then you’re going to have to start asking yourself some real questions about what you really want from your love life.
And once you have the answers, actually be honest about them from the start. Here’s an important question to ask yourself:
“What are my needs?”
And I do mean YOUR needs. Not his. Not what you’re accepting or tolerating or hoping to get from a man just because there’s nothing better around right now.
Be clear here and think it through. I’ll give you a minute…
Most of the women I know who are dating have a set of subconscious requirements from the men they’re seeing:
That any man they’re involved with, in any way, isn’t dating or still involved with another woman
That he’s open and ready to explore a serious relationship once they get to know each other
That they share the same values and priorities – or he can at least appreciate and support her values
That it’s going somewhere, and it’s not just going to be casual dating forever
But these aren’t things they are willing or able to communicate directly with the man they’re seeing. So, they end up in a situation that is anything but what they were looking for.
They say, “This is fine for now. I’m just enjoying myself.”
They are not being honest with themselves about their bottom-line “must-haves” and therefore can’t express these things to the man, either.
So, how in touch are you with your REQUIREMENTS to feel good when it comes to men and dating? And how do you communicate these to a man?
Do you do it indirectly by acting frustrated and angry when your needs aren’t being met, after you’ve already become intimate and emotionally vested in the relationship? Or do you do it directly and in a positive context as things are GETTING STARTED, so you’re in sync from the get-go?
Remember, 99% of the time, a man is NOT going to make the right decisions for you, or magically and telepathically recognize and meet all your needs.
Sticking to a set of minimum standards and then communicating those helps show a man what it’s going to take to make you happy.
3. Radically Reject Behavior That Doesn’t Meet Your Standards
I observed something fascinating about people and relationships a few years back.
When we’re in a situation that causes bad feelings and friction of some kind, there is always some kind of “payoff” for one or the other person… and that’s why they persist in sticking with the bad situation.
Here’s what you’re getting out of the “casual” thing…
You get a safe and risk-free path to get close to this guy. Even though technically you’re not “close” at all. I call this “working it from the ‘friend zone”.
After all, how vulnerable would you be if you shared what you REALLY were looking for up front, BEFORE you slept with him? You might be disappointed or rejected, or you would be unable to continue the “friendship” that you have right now.
And maybe having to start over alone might actually be worse in your mind than having something crappy and low-quality that you’re “tolerating” now.
But if you look deeper, you’ll probably see that your desire for something more was there all along underneath the surface. Therefore, I doubt that you could have been “just friends” with him anyway, even if you never slept together, without you feeling gypped in some way.
That’s why you have to show a man that you’re strong and you know what you want, and you won’t settle for scraps or second-best or “good enough for now.”
-Christian Carter

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Related Reading: http://elitedaily.com/dating/6-reasons-youre-hookup-girlfriend/869942/
http://elitedaily.com/dating/hookup-culture-non-relationship-generation-getting-nowhere/664654/
http://elitedaily.com/women/every-girl-one-guy-shell-always-go-back/939666/

Related Music: Tug of War by Andy Mineo https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uubPjUhxAyQ
When I’m Alone by Lissie: http://youtu.be/7G0_eN36QVc

http://en.gravatar.com/lmartinez85

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Gender Issues

hey Slut: dissecting Slut Walks part 1

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I have never been called a Slut. To my face, online, or anywhere for that matter. That I know of. I have not been raped or sexually assaulted. I tell you that to be honest. So you know where I am coming from and where I’m not. Today, many people protest and leach onto to causes they truly have no heart for. They get caught up in the divisiveness and loud noises. Like Brick Tamland here.

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If we told people that in 2015 Obama was in the process to scrap July 4th as a national holiday to be more Muslim-friendly as part of international relations, groups and individuals of all interest groups would be taking sides of an octagon. The United BasketWeavers of America, The National Association of People Against Everything, along with the ForEverythingPeople would be taking to twitter, facebook, youtube, AOL Hotmail, Morse code, and anything else they could get their hands on to get their “message” out there. Sadly, the average American is not able to decipher between satire, truth, fake-truths, bias, and bait. We are the most privileged country in the world, we have First World Problem memes, and have knowledge at our fingertips. But we collectively have the maturity level of a 15 year old.

During my early twenties, I always killed the vibe of that one drinking game. A list was always drawn up on the spot, 2 through Ace, each card had something for you to do. King: guys drink, Queen: b****es drink or hoes drink, 4: I never…, 7: person to your left drinks, and so on.  The tasks varied, but there was always the demeaning term for women used. If I drew that Queen, I wouldn’t take a drink, “I’m not a hoe, so I’m not doing it.” AHHH, COME’ON! OKAY, GIRLS DRINK THEN! I apparently I was taking it too serious. I hated drinking games anyway.

Some women use “Hey B****” or “hey slut” just as casual openers between friends. Hearing women use those words towards each other always appalled me. Those words were meant to hurt us, why use them towards each other for fun? Or the infamous, I can say it but you can’t philosophy.

So this “taking Slut back” movement confuses me. I just want to say, Honey, why are you calling yourself a slut? To show Men that you are Not a slut? To prove to those that judge you, that you are Not a slut?

Its like middle school or high school logic. Call a girl a slut and watch her try to prove that she isn’t one. No matter what she says after that makes her look like she’s lying. Its like calling someone crazy. BUT IM NOT CRAZY! Well, that’s what crazy people say. IM NOT AN ADDICT! Well, that’s what addicts say. IM NOT A CHILD MOLESTER! Well, that’s what a child molester would say. I DIDN’T KILL THAT PERSON! Well, that’s what someone that killed that person would say. Its never ending. Theres no way out. If someone accuses you of having sex with someone that you did not have sex with, you cannot prove that you never had sex with them. All you have is your word.

Words are powerful. To re-label yourself a slut in effort to prove that you aren’t one doesn’t make sense. To bathe in hurtful and vulgar words does not show self-actualization, enlightenment or wisdom. If you are not striving for either of those three terms, what are you shouting for then?

Now I remember I have been called names. Working with teenagers that are “locked up” in facilities, you will be called anything and everything. The worst of the worst, C**T.  I’ve been yelled at, cussed at, threatened, and postured towards. I’ve had chairs thrown in my direction. Being the victim of physical and verbal aggression was nothing to be shocked by. Within the last week, I was called a “Mexican hoe” by teenage boys. Was it ridiculous? Yes. Was I irritated? Yes. Am I a Mexican hoe? No? I am Mexican so…it doesn’t matter. I continued on with the expectation that they did not follow, but I practiced emotional intelligence and judged them solely on their merits of being teenage boys. I did not break into anger, and political protest. I’m not raging against teenage boys or men.

My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry… James 1:19

He who is slow to anger has great understanding, But he who is quick-tempered exalts folly. Proverbs 14:29

Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret–it leads only to evil.  For evil men will be cut off, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land. Psalm 37:8-9

Better a patient man than a warrior, a man who controls his temper than one who takes a city. Proverbs 16:32

Verse after verse, the Bible reiterates this message about anger. In case you think the Bible is crap, here is some psychology:

“Anger can make us blind to the truth and unable to accept what’s sensible and correct. When anger is the primary emotion being felt, we become less able to think and act rationally and in some cases, even our senses do not work properly because of extreme anger.”

http://www.psychologistanywhereanytime.com/emotional_problems_psychologist/pyschologist_anger.htm

Some people live day to day with chronic stress, presumably anger. Some do their best to keep their anger at bay or manage it as an active volcano. I am certainly not one of those people. I get truly angry about once a year. I let things go and forgive even when I don’t always know it. I wasn’t supposed to talk to her, dammit. Oh well.

Anger is considered a secondary emotion. Secondary to HURT/PAIN. We mask our hurt feelings with anger. Anger pushes people away. Ive struggled the most with trying to help many teenagers with their issues all the while they are doing everything they can to push people away. Angry people make it hard for us to help them. They push us to the point where we consider walking away. And many people do walk away.

In effort to redefine a hurtful term, as one of twisted sense of empowerment, you have made the people you are shouting at turn away or look in amusement. See they are saying they are sluts, proving us right. Calling yourself a slut will not make others realize they shouldn’t call you a slut. Escalating yourselves will not teach others how they are wrong. It will not intimidate them into changing their ways. It will not shame them as you have been shamed. Your aggressive language towards yourself (and those you claim to be fighting for) does nothing to them. You cannot change others. You can only change yourself and I suggest taking the word Slut out of your vocabulary to start.

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In reaction to a man touching (rape/assault) your body (your most sacred parts) without your consent, you expose your body (your most sacred parts) to even more men in public with pride. Circular reasoning.

Related reading: http://www.girlsgonewise.com/five-problems-i-have-with-slutwalk-marches/

http://theprayingwoman.com/2014/12/08/because-he-knows-my-pain/

http://outofthefog.net/CommonBehaviors/Gaslighting.html

http://www.relevantmagazine.com/god/showing-grace-era-cultural-outrage

http://en.gravatar.com/that1liana

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