There’s something that’s been stirring in my heart lately, something that is so hard to explain… but you know I have to try.
I call her The Facebook Christian. “Her”, because I see a lot of myself in her words and actions. Well-intentioned. Heart for God. Convictions firmly planted. Loved by many. Lover of many. Defender of many. Offender of many. Something’s just a little, teensy bit off. Don’t get me wrong… right off the bat I can say I’ve brought my Facebook/blog to hell and back, so no one’s condemning here. There’s just a little something off.
We all have morals, values, beliefs, and Facebook is undoubtedly the platform of choice for many of us to voice these openly. As a place to feel — if only for the brief second it takes to click ‘enter’ — Free. Bold. Entitled. It’s OUR page, after all.
But what if we’re not using it in the way that paints the best picture of Christians as a whole? I’ve been guilty, so to speak, of using Facebook as my spiritual checklist of sorts. I say ‘spiritual’, but it’s really more religious… works and striving and doing doing doing and pressure to be better and having checklists and feeling guilty for not being perfect or saying the right thing… that’s just plain miserable. That’s not what I want for my life, online or off.
I’ll give a few examples of some very basic Facebook Christian behavior:
- Post a Bible verse today. Check.
- Share/like a political/inspirational/Jesus-y quote, article or story. Check.
Ahh, feels good to be a Facebook Christian. So fulfilling to stand up for what I believe! Sort of. Let’s try it some more! (And this is where the lines start getting blurry… naturally. We’re human.)
- Leave a comment on a charged post about homosexuals, Duck Dynasty, The Election, rear-facing car seats, vaccines, breastfeeding until age 5, Chik-fil-A, etc. Check.
- BONUS POINTS for use of a Bible verse to prove your point. Check.
- Passive-aggressively ‘like’ a photo of the friend who you’re in a fight with, juuust to let her know you’re still keeping tabs and that of course you don’t mind that she’s having fun without you! (But you totally do mind.) Check.
- Stalk an ex. Only a quick peek… Check.
- Message an ex. BUT! just to see how life is treating them. Check.
- Post a borderline cleavagey girl’s night picture where you hid the margarita out of the camera’s view. Check.
- Intentionally hide a post from your parents, boss, church friends, etc. because they’d “judge” your behavior. Check.
Again, I’ve done all of these at some point and I’m not pointing fingers at any one person (SERIOUSLY. I love you all and am trying to look inward here.), but are you sort of getting what I’m trying to say? We do these things that aren’t necessarily fabulous one day, and still expect the world to listen when we have something to say that is actually meaningful, with purpose, with true LOVE as a motivator. Because we all know that DOES happen sometimes! We do have good intentions and a heart for God! No one is arguing that here. Just because I’m a Christian doesn’t mean I don’t struggle with things. I’m sad to say though, the world probably doesn’t always listen to/read those pure, good things we have to say. They may roll their eyes. They may think, Bigot. Hypocrite. Preachy. And when we think we’re being neutral by posting photos of our kids, all they can think is, “Oh there’s Bigot’s kids! Too bad. They’re cute.”
I’m not meaning to sound harsh, again. And yes, I know ‘persecution’ is all part of the job, but if I’m going to be persecuted, I want to have my side of the street clean so it’s ACTUALLY persecution and not just something I had coming because of my big mouth or because I flew off the handle about abortion in a moment of sleep deprived rage.
Personally, I’m just done doing the Susie Christian Facebook thing. I love the Lord and people know it already. I’ll talk/share when He leads me to do so without regret, but never again out of anger. That’s not God. Never again if it’s going to hurt those I’m called to love, regardless of their lifestyle. That’s not God behavior either because God is love. And never again because I feel the need to fulfill an imaginary religious checklist. God doesn’t have a check list for me! Or you. We are in right standing WHERE WE ARE. That’s the beauty of loving Jesus. The “work” has been done. It’s not about what we say anyway, it’s about what’s behind it. What’s motivating it. Who is motivating it.
It’s been a tough thing to put into practice, this ‘walk the walk’ thing, I’m telling you. I don’t have it down yet, but if it means not being seen as just another Facebook Christian and instead as a woman who really WALKS it, LIVES it, BREATHES it… then count me in.
And now I’m off to post this on my Facebook page… ;)
My baby just lost her first tooth!
Unfortunately, it was lost and, ahem, swallowed while she was eating a bag of Target popcorn. It’s all very fitting, really. So tonight, we’re going to write the tooth fairy a note and leave it under Maddie’s pillow, explaining the mishap. I’m sure she’ll understand.
I have officially reached the stage of “Is she pregnant or is that a beer gut?” You know, where maternity clothes are still too roomy and your pre-pregnancy clothes don’t flatter. Or button. And you kind of expect everyone to just know that you are with child, but not everyone does, nor are they as obsessed with that fact as you are. Sometimes they might kind of get confused and don’t know what to say to you so they just avoid the topic altogether until you find a way to bring it up all nonchalantly in the conversation like, “Oh, I’m just on my way to pick up some lemonade at the store and DID YOU KNOW MY BABY IS THE SIZE OF A LEMON?” And then they’re all, “I thought you might be pregz! Congratz”, but you know that during your entire conversation, they were staring you straight in the eye and pretending to listen, but were really just having an intense inner-struggle over whether or not to bring up your belly.
Or you know, they just didn’t notice because you don’t look that much different yet and you’re just paranoid. (No, YOU’RE paranoid!).
Something I’ve noticed is that maternity clothes are only super cute when you’re not pregnant and happen to be walking by the maternity section. I walked through the section on the regular whenever I wasn’t pregnant and it was the same thing errytime… awww, to have a cute belly and dress it all cute and be all cute! When you’re actually pregnant, it’s NOT THE SAME and everything makes you feel 900 years old and 900 pounds. So I’m trying to stretch out the regular clothes as long as I can.
Enter, this item. I saw this cute-ish metallic-ish sweatshirt and wanted to see if it would work.
I quickly learned it did not. ABORT. ABORT.
After a handful of items that did not fit the bill (and having two melting down children in the dressing room with me) I just went with my cami for the shot.
P.S. The rubber band trick is totally the rage with my pants right now. And it happens to be one of Maddie’s tiny little ponytail holders, so I expect it to snap at any given moment.
…technically 12 1/2 weeks… You know how this goes. Every day counts, man.
Nothing to report, really! This one just feels like normal life is going on and I’m not really all that obsessed? Or worried? Or focused on every little belly twinge or spotting or barfy detail? I don’t know how to describe it except to say that I have absolutely no fear this pregnancy. It’s a really awesome feeling and a HUGE relief. It’s made all the difference, not carrying around the extra stress that I had with the other two pregnancies.
Pregnancy is such a breeding ground for fear, amirite? My heart aches for women who experience loss and others who are just absolutely miserable during their pregnancies. What seems to make everything worse is that we’re actually conditioned to be scared if we DON’T barf every day or feel like junk. Like, I’m feeling great! OH NO SOMETHING MUST BE HORRIBLY WRONG! It’s a cruel mind game, man! All I know is that I’m SO thankful for this free feeling and for my health. I know this baby (girl… prediction officially made) is healthy and thriving and ALIVE.
Also, cheese is a no. I may feel great, but the sight/smell/thought of cheese makes me gag/cry.
You know that scene in The Sandlot where they’re having a camp out and telling the scary story? At one point, they’ve reached complete unity in their understanding of this foul creature, and simultaneously they all eerily whisper, “THE BEAST.”
I’ve used this special cart before and I guess it was like childbirth, in that I completely forgot how painful and grotesque the experience actually was. “Sure, kids! Hop on!” says I, Cool Mom. I mean, I could have carried a handheld basket because I really only had to buy like 2 things, but oh please. Too simple!
Pushing this over the yellow bumps of death at the entrance was enough to leave me gasping for air. I had to take a breather at the Dollar Spot. From there, it continued to spiral down into a pit of despair. Despair and surprisingly, laughter. This thing is like, 9 feet long, and with the Christmas crowd out and about, it took extreme caution on my part not to run over everyone in my path! I kept busting up laughing because turning corners was just ridiculous. I have no other words to describe it. And I was getting stuck on racks of clothing and and and… the list goes on, my friends.
The best part of the experience was noticing who gave a turd about my misfortune and who didn’t even mind. I think I ran over about 9 toes and no one got annoyed. I had a few moms laugh along with me, nodding their heads in sympathy, but my favorite was an older Asian man in the canned food aisle. We were at one end and he turned and began walking toward us. I was already trying my hardest to move the cart to the right side to make enough room for him. As he got closer, he started laughing and smiling with THE most sincere expression I’ve ever seen. It was the sweetest thing. He’s like, “That looks like a tough one!” chuckle chuckle. I bet he’d make a good grandpa. I kind of wanted to hug him. He might have called security at that point, but yeah.
Anyway, this thing? Funny, but never again. I brought it up on Facebook and all my friends chimed in with their own stories. Everyone knows the legend of The Beast.