My mom has given me a lot of good advice over the years. Some of my favorites include making sure I’m careful walking in the mall parking lot (even if it’s at 2 PM in broad daylight) and teaching me the value of blush. (My skin tone is classified as “porcelain” which is the nice way of saying “ghost-like,” so blush is definitely a necessity for me.)
I have worked with kids for years (and particularly preschoolers), but things got real when my own daughter turned three. Lyla, my daughter, has taught me a lot in the last three and a half years. Some lessons have been easier than others. Like that I really can’t draw Elsa very well or that coffee can be reheated an infinite amount of times. Some lessons have been harder to swallow.
September is National Suicide Prevention month. Thinking my life experiences have made me somewhat of an expert in that area, I was asked to address the subject of suicide. I agreed, but not because I am an expert in the prevention of suicide. After all, if I were an expert in preventing suicide, I wouldn’t have this story to tell.
I was hanging out with a friend when she asked a tough question. I didn’t know how to answer. The thought ran through my head, “What if I’m judged based on my answer?” I wrestled in my mind with what to say for what felt like forever. Maybe I’m thinking through this too much? I knew I had to respond. Finally, I answered: “Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire by Jim Cymbala”.
Do you think we can ever learn enough? Admittedly, I'm rather curious by nature. As an adult, I’ve taken classes to learn quilting, calligraphy, photography, floral design, sailing, inspirational speaking, writing, computer skills, cooking (I keep trying!), cake decorating, counseling and the Bible.
We’ve all said it or at least heard someone say it. “I’ll never forgive myself for…” What if I told you there was no such thing as forgiving yourself? The Bible addresses our need for forgiveness from God, us forgiving others, but not us forgiving ourselves. How does that change how you think about forgiveness?
I remember talking on the phone with a friend who I had gotten to know while we both lived in Manhattan. We had spent numerous lunch or coffee dates talking about every topic under the sun, yet we had never discussed our theological views on gender. When the topic came up that day, we were both a bit timid.
It’s hard not to constantly think of ourselves. Or is that just me?
We live in a culture that worships selfies, is always looking for the next best self-help guru, and often values the rights of self-expression and self-governance above all else. It even seems that our Christian culture is becoming increasingly “me” focused. We want to listen to the podcasted sermons we choose - those we deem to be most interesting or relevant. We gravitate like flies towards books that will help us find our purpose, overcome our personal anxiety, and help us reach our goals.