The Perfect People Are Liars

ImageI would love to be one of those moms that was able to post beautiful pictures of my perfect children having a happy and harmonious day.  Exactly how does that work in other homes?  It seems that everyone on every social media outlet have this perfection … every single day.  The picture above is one of two pictures I’ve ever taken of all three of my beans somewhat looking into the camera.  It was a glorious day because there is one other photo that was also acceptable.  It has been blown up and printed.  It now hangs in several rooms in our home with the idea that there will never be another that comes even close to “print worthy.”  These photos were taken eight years ago.  Although I try and try again to get them all in one good and happy photo … it fails almost every time.  You would believe (as I have fooled myself to believe) that as they get older, this process would get easier.  This is nonsense.  As they get older they can fight more about the picture taking process.  I have great pictures of the girls by themselves and with one other sibling but trying to get all three of them together in one photo (all smiling and looking happy) is something I’ve considered impossible.

There were two other acceptable photos.  One from last summer and one from Christmas two years ago.  I cherish these pictures because they are so rare.  Then I see pictures of other family sibling groups on social media.  Their day is filled with sunshine and perfection everyday.  They post pictures of their angels smiling into the camera and doing cute things that only perfect children who are part of perfect families can do.

My pictures consist of silly kids making crazy faces doing awkward dances for the camera.  The chaos is evident even in the photos.  There are dogs walking by, an article of clothing in the background, a dish that did not get taken to the sink … you get the picture?  If not, here are typical examples.

The crazy kid dancing the silly dance with wacky clothes and makeup (note the blue Wegman’s bag on the floor) …Image

The girls decided to put on Dad’s shirt and disassemble their old My Size Barbie’s arms and legs for use as their as their arms (random shoes and water bottle on floor) …

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And we can’t forget Wacky Wednesday from school spirit week …

ImageAs I look at these pictures, I think that we are a completely normal family and all those other people are liars.  Their life can’t possibly be THAT perfect.  For me to get the angelic pictures like the ones that others post, I would have to bribe and scream for hours pay someone else to have their children pose for my family pictures.

I’m so thankful for all these crazy fun memories.  We do live in a certain sense of chaos but it’s a happy chaos.  I wouldn’t have it any other way.  Not even like the perfect people.  It’s just not worth it to lie.

 

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Fred Phelps is NOT Dead and Other Thoughts on World Vision

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I am a woman.  I am a woman in seminary.  If you believe that these are two strikes rather than two strengths, we might not agree on some things.

The World Vision debate.  Why is this such a mess?  First let me say why it’s not a mess.  It is NOT a mess because some people have more conservative beliefs concerning LGBT rights within a Christian organization.  It is NOT a mess because some progressive or liberal Christians support LGBT rights.  It is NOT even a mess because World Vision supported certain LGBT rights and then unsupported those same rights.  This is what religious freedom is all about.  We get to believe what we want to believe on certain issues.  It just happens to be the issue of homosexuality under the spotlight for our generation.  Now back to the real mess.

The hate that was spewed was the equivalent of any Westboro Baptist funeral protest.  Some of the hateful words I’ve read “in the name of Jesus” broke my heart. I don’t want any of these “hate-scripture-hate” spewing people to ever represent me as a Christian.  Scripture should never be wrapped in hatred.  I know not everyone is going to agree with me.  It might even be that only a very few people agree with me.  The hatred started and the “love your neighbor” concept was thrown out the window.  And then there were the “I love the sinner, I just hate the sin” people.  It annoys me that I even have to type it on this computer.  Every time I hear it, I let out a blood curdling scream on the inside.  Sometimes I even let people who say it know what I really think.  So now you have the reasoning for the title of this post.  Fred Phelps is NOT dead.  His legacy of hatred toward our homosexual brothers and sisters will live on as long as we wrap scripture with hatred.

Hate spewing turned to sponsor pulling.  What about the children?

More of us on the “liberal” side of Christianity rejoiced.  It was a step forward for the LGBT community.  What about the children?

More hate.  More sponsor pulling.  What about the children?

For conservatives it became more about the homosexual sinner than about the children.  For liberals it became more about LGBT rights than it did about the children.

I agreed with World Vision’s first decision.  I support my LGBT friends.  I’m not one to quantify sin.  I have enough of my own to account for, so I don’t have time to worry about every other person’s sin. Where’s that doughnut I just had in my hand?

I also agree with the reversal.  It breaks my heart, but I agree with it.  Why?  Because it’s about the children.  The lost sponsorship was destroying everything that the organization had built.  Some call it pandering to the conservative right.  Yes, but no.  In my heart of hearts I believe that World Vision executives hate that they had to reverse that monumental decision.  They did what they had to do to make sure that their organization would be able to fulfill their mission.  They remembered the children.

If you dropped a sponsorship on a child please, please, please renew that sponsorship now.  World Vision did what you wanted.  It’s about the children.  If you have sponsored a child because of the first decision and are angry about the reversal, I get it, but please don’t punish the child.  World Vision is a good organization in which to send your donations.

Please don’t spew hatred in the comments, I won’t post it.  Don’t make it a scripture battle.  For every homosexuality-is-a-sin verse you have, I’m sure I can come up with a feed-and-take-care-of-the-orphans or a get-the-plank-out-of-your-eye verse.  I refuse to do a scripture battle.