The Fourth of July is tomorrow! When we, as a country celebrate our independence. Our freedom. Our country. But something got me thinking about how our country expresses our freedom. In some ways we express our freedom through love, through religion and other ways that represent good morale. But for the most part, I think America expresses it’s freedom with an arrogant, headstrong selfish attitude.
One of the most prominent ways America expresses its freedom is through feminism. Feminists have such a huge megaphone right now and they use it in any way they can to shovel their ideas and lifestyles down this country’s throat. I know that that is a very strong statement but I feel like it is no longer the “Land of the Free”, or the “Home of the Brave”. I think it is the Land of the Free Woman and the Home of the Feminist.
I am obsessed with my looks. There, I said it.
Not the type of obsessed that I can’t pass a mirror or other reflective surface without checking myself out. I’m not arrogant in that I think I’m so beautiful that I simply must have another look at myself. I don’t take selfies anywhere and everywhere and scatter them throughout various outlets of social media. I don’t make selfie books for my husband, Kim Kardashian-style. But I’m obsessed with certain aspects of my appearance.
I don’t quite know how or when this “obsession” started, but I suspect it had something at least in part to do with an unkind boyfriend I had my freshman year of college. Though I was 5’ 7” and maybe 110 pounds on a water-retention kind of day, he made the remark at some point that I could “stand to lose a little weight.” For someone who’d endured some hurtful comments about my looks (something about me not being as pretty as other girls) early in my youth, I had already suffered a few dings to my self-esteem, so this jab about my weight was particularly stabbing and I took it straight to the heart.
Friends are awesome. I hope that everyone has at least one, true, amazing friend that they stay in contact with for their whole lives. I have been blessed to meet so many different people from different stages of my life. My family moved a lot. And I mean A LOT! I’ve met so many amazing people and each group of friends that I’ve had have ministered to me for the specific time of life I was experiencing at that time.
Having friends should inspire us to be good friends to the people in our lives in return. Growing up, I couldn’t wait to start driving and asking friends to meet me places so that we could talk about our lives and about the Lord. Ministering to friends and encouraging them in the Lord is one of the most special, genuine, things you can do for your friendships.
“I’m hot, I’m sexy and I’m in control.”
A few years back a friend of mine pulled up the computer to show me pictures of a semi-finalist on the popular show America’s Next Top Model. It just so happened that the girl competing for the Top Model title attended my friends university.
My friend was so shocked by how “fierce” this girl looked in her photos that she just had to show me. This girl definitely had the “I’m hot, I’m sexy and I’m in control” fierce look going on. She must have been trained well by the shows host, Tyra Banks.
This whole idea of being fierce was attractive to me. I wanted people to look at me and think “Wow! She’s got it”. But then I remembered that I was a Christian and the idea just didn’t seem right.
Today I had to do something very difficult. Right now I am on a plane headed back to California. I am going to be a youth counselor at a Christian retreat center in the beautiful Redwood forests of Santa Cruz. But I had to leave behind my beautiful home in the mountains of Montana, I had to leave my friends and church body. But more than that, I had to say goodbye to my big, wonderful, amazing family. I am literally stepping into the unknown, leaving behind everything I’ve ever had close to me 24/7.
I know I’m being called to minister to the youth and to be a young women’s counselor, but sometimes, following God’s lead is scary. We don’t have everything figured out, and I don’t think we ever will. But isn’t it comforting to know that we are following the ONE who does?
When I was younger I was nailed to the idea that I would be married by age 16 and have my first adorable baby at age 18. I was so excited to grow up and meet my future husband and marry him. I told all of my family and friends that I wanted to get married at 16 and they would giggle and say good luck.
I held on to my dream and wished upon every star and dandelion weed that God would give me a husband to marry. Every boy I met I would “romanticize” my life with. I would match my first name with his last name and write it out on paper to see what it would look like. (Who hasn’t done that, right?)
Well, when I turned 15 Mr. Charming came into the picture. He was perfect. Tall, blonde hair, blue eyes, and even 3 years older than me. We began talking on a regular basis and he even asked me for my phone number.
Have you ever heard of the ripple effect? When you do something that sets an entire plan into motion, when you make a decision that will effect the rest of your life that ripples into other choices you make int he future. The ripple effect is when we do something that ripples into others lives, into your future, into the future of your children and even you grandchildren. The ripple begins with a decision that is made by you.
Decision making is the most important, life defining, memorable, crucial thing you will ever do in your life. The decisions you make are very important. How you make them, how you follow through with them, and how they will define you is even more important…
Katherine Hudson was a normal girl living in California… She grew up in a Christian home with her little brother and older sister. Her dad was a pastor and her mother was involved in the ministry as well. Katherine loved music. She loved singing and she loved hearing new music-especially secular music which was not allowed in her home. Katherine knew that when she grew up she wanted to be a singer. She planned on it her whole life growing up.
When Katherine was 13 her parents gave her a guitar. She practiced as much as she could until she was really good. Something happened within the next 5 years of her life. Katherine began sneaking secular music into her room. She broke her parents rules. The more sneaking she did the more she slipped into a secular lifestyle.
“Take a deep breath. Here we go again” I tell myself. I was about to explain why I was saving my first kiss again. It’s not that I didn’t like telling others why I was saving my first kiss for marriage, it’s just that I already know the feedback I will get once I explain it. How did we get on this subject anyways? I forget.
*Sigh. “Well, ” I begin, “When I was little my parents told me that..
( Guest Post by Kristen Clark)
“Hey, my friend wanted me to tell you that he thinks you’re pretty.” This young whippersnapper pointed across the basketball gym towards his friend. I glanced across the gym and noticed a good looking guy sitting on the second row.
“Oh really?” I said raising my eyebrows. “Well, then tell your friend to come tell me that himself.” I smiled.
The guy shook his head..