It happened to my sister…it could happen to me

This is actually my Facebook post that I’m publishing here. It’s not fancied up but if it can stir conversation among you,God please us it: 

I’ve been waiting to post this. Praying God use this. Please read if you can.
I’m not looking for a Facebook response or debate. No emoticons needed. Read. Pray. Act. 

In light of recent issues, I stand reminding you that this story of hatred towards my sister could have easily been me. It’s an ugly thought. But it’s true. While she was sitting under a tree, reading, enjoying time with her puppy, She was threatened in broad daylight because of her skin color.

See the video post here: https://www.facebook.com/christiana.clark.7/posts/10157191191620151

This could have been far worse. 

And this could easily happen to me.

Wherever you live, this evil will show itself. Please rise up and respond. It won’t be easy to ask your friend not to joke line that. It won’t be easy to call grandpa or uncle on a racial slur. It’s unnerving to check our own selves on the fear and prejudice in which we may have been unknowingly brought up. But it’s time to face it.

Because God has made us wonderfully and perfectly–all of us. And right now, though all lives matter, media and questionable actions are hitting the core of the lives of Black people. Don’t be offended at the saying Black lives Matter. It’s not a calling card to rebel against police. It’s just a reminder that we as a nation need to continue to embrace each other. It’s a chance for all of us to validate each other. See, the stories we know of our parents and grandparents–we are being confronted with in our time and all to often these days. Whatever the truth is in these circumstances, can you imagine the fear and anger that it incites? If I said I love you and you said well I love everybody…your generalization alienates my personal statement of love. Love everybody! And love me, too!

Do you realize I could be one of those stories put in the wrong place at the wrong time? Sin still exists. We need to do more than talk. Pray people of God, I am asking you in particular to pray but to act. Most importantly share the Gospel of Jesus with everyone. It is Christ who shows that we ARE all equal. Every one of us needing forgiveness. Every one of us imperfect but wanted by our Creator who made a way for us not to obtain perfection, but salvation. As we do that, then we can also gain wisdom from God and respond in right living, in love and in truth, in the right words and deeds to combat this evil and triumph.
Me and my beautiful family.

Stay Just Peachie everybody

“Peace I leave with you; My [own] peace I now give and bequeath to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. [Stop allowing yourselves to be agitated and disturbed; and do not permit yourselves to be fearful and intimidated and cowardly and unsettled.]”

‭‭John‬ ‭14:27‬ ‭AMP‬‬

http://bible.com/8/jhn.14.27.amp

You Know What? I Need You. Reflections for Friday

You know what? I need you.

Life is happening fast around here. I have decided I need to take time out to remember what happens between the scheduling and exhaustion of everyday life and just reflect. 

This week, you know what I realized? I need you.

I have the honor of being a coach, a mom, a mentor, a leader, and a teacher in some capacity everyday. 

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Most of the time, my mind is consumed by what my particular “team” needs at that moment. I am motivated by the fact that they need me. However, as I look at this week in particular, I can see that I need the people around me as much as they need me. The people I serve–both seen and unseen, including you Reader friend–also serve me often without my acknowledgement.

I know this is not a profound or new thought, but explore this simple moment with me.

 I need every person who comes in and out of my life to help shape and reveal who I am. My volleyball team may need this Coach to guide and develop them but I need someone to inspire and someone to whom I can impart my love and knowledge of the game. My kids need me (they would be dirty, naked, and pitiful without me, right?), but I truly need them (I’d be so much more selfish, impatient, and love-deprived without them, right?). As I check down the list of other relationships I have, the more I see I am as much the benefactor as I am the nurturer. That is, if I take the time to allow that revelation to sink deep.

This kinda deflates the power of my adult pity parties. Playing the caretaker-martyr doesn’t give as much satisfaction if I realize the incredible amounts of gifts that I receive as I give. Can I really be thankful for the aggravation and frustration that some relationships bring with them? Yes. 

Not only can I be thankful, but I can also be humble in knowing that you may need me, but, you know what, I need you, too

Take your moment today and stay,

Just Peachiecropped-cropped-justpeachielogosimple1.jpeg

You Know What? I Need You. Reflections for Friday

You know what? I need you.

Life is happening fast around here. I have decided I need to take time out to remember what happens between the scheduling and exhaustion of everyday life and just reflect. 

This week, you know what I realized? I need you.

I have the honor of being a coach, a mom, a mentor, a leader, and a teacher in some capacity everyday. Most of the time, my mind is consumed by what my particular “team” needs at that moment. I am motivated by the fact that they need me. However, as I look at this week in particular, I can see that I need the people around me as much as they need me. The people I serve–both seen and unseen, including you Reader friend–also serve me often without my acknowledgement.

I know this is not a profound or new thought, but explore this simple moment with me.

 I need every person who comes in and out of my life to help shape and reveal who I am. My volleyball team may need this Coach to guide and develop them but I need someone to inspire and someone to whom I can impart my love and knowledge of the game. My kids need me (they would be dirty, naked, and pitiful without me, right?), but I truly need them (I’d be so much more selfish, impatient, and love-deprived without them, right?). As I check down the list of other relationships I have, the more I see I am as much the benefactor as I am the nurturer. That is, if I take the time to allow that revelation to sink deep.

This kinda deflates the power of my adult pity parties. Playing the caretaker-martyr doesn’t give as much satisfaction if I realize the incredible amounts of gifts that I receive as I give. Can I really be thankful for the aggravation and frustration that some relationships bring with them? Yes. 

Not only can I be thankful, but I can also be humble in knowing that you may need me, but, you know what, I need you, too

Take your moment today and stay,

Just Peachiecropped-cropped-justpeachielogosimple1.jpeg

May I be honest? I am a liar of the worst kind.

I’m not the kind of liar who is malicious or purposefully evil, but I am a liar of the worst kind. You heard right…the worst that I can think of anyway.

Now I can just hear my Daddy say to me, “Peachie-peach,(that’s what he calls me) you could never be the worst kind of anything!” (He is unashamedly biased like that and I am still thrilled that he is!) But, sorry Daddy, I am. Just what kind of liar am I?

Let’s see.

If you were to graph lies from harmless to just plain nasty, the categories may look like this:

Courtesy of Stuart Miles @freedigitalphotos.net

Courtesy of Stuart Miles @freedigitalphotos.net

Precious liar: the kind that lies because they don’t know any better, like my two year old.

Scaredy pants liar: the kind that lies because they don’t want to get caught, like my four year old
…and every teenager I know

Evil liar: the kind that lies knowingly and willingly…you know who I’m talking about

Then there’s me, the Truthful liar: the worst kind of liar whose lies she believes to be truth. 

Yes, I am such a good liar that when I lie to myself, I actually believe what I am saying. As a matter of fact, I don’t even realize that I am lying. In my mind, I am doing the right thing. I am doing what in my mind I think I am supposed to do, what “you” think would be the proper thing to do. Thing is, surface truth is all you are getting. Deep down, I am evil.

Courtesy of Stuart Miles @freegitialphotos.net

Courtesy of Stuart Miles @freegitialphotos.net

For instance, when you tell me that you just got a new house and a promotion and I hug you and say that it is so wonderful for you…I’m lying. I wish it was me.

When your kid beats mine at anything and I tell my child that it is her effort that I am most proud of, I’m lying. I wanted her to win.

When I do a ten minute workout and then eat french fries afterwards, I’m lying to myself. I did not work off those extra calories.

When, at the end of the day, I zone out to Netflix because I spent my whole day “working” and I “deserve” it, I’m lying. I am looking for a way to be lazy.

When you find out that my son is wearing a leg brace not because he broke it but because it is a condition, and you smile and say, “Oh, he’s so cute though,”, I may smile back at you, LIES… I’ve slapped you in my mind.

When everything has gone wrong, yet I speak with such confidence that everything is going to be ok. LYING…I am scared that what I want to happen, won’t. Then how will I uphold my faith…to “you”?

Yup. If I may be brutally honest with you and with myself, I am taken aback with just how many lies I have actually lived. I’ve believed these lies and more. Until today. My family is going through a season of birthdays, anniversaries, and milestones. This time of year moves my mind to reflection and this year the mirror was not kind, and I am so thankful for this painful awakening.

Because now I can change it.

I want to continue to live life fully, not fearfully. I want to deal with life as it comes, instead of trying to defend it. I believe there is growth, there is purpose, and there is promise in the pain and the shortcomings I try so hard to avoid. I want to know that life. 

And that life is there for me if I can stop lying…… and start LIVING.

Have you ever found yourself trying to be the man or woman you want to be but you find yourself pretending to be that person, instead of actually being her or being him? In all honesty, I am done lying to myself. This may not be the “build-your-blog-base” post I should write, but authentic yet successful living is what I am compelled to write. If you want to take this journey with me and bring others along, follow these next few blog posts. I want to see change, not just talk about it. If you are ready  (I promise not to tell your dad), then please join me. I have some principles I have lived and learned that will help us in this quest for living in Truth. They are not my own…I am not that smart. However, wisdom comes not from coming up with the right ideas but living them.

Life isn’t easy, but with a little effort it can be…

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On the Me{n}U: My Horrible Mommy, Life-changing Moment

It happened. I planned for it. I practiced for it. I dreaded it. I hoped I would never have to face it. I feared every time I heard it happening to someone else.

But a horrible moment happened to me anyway.

I lost my five year old daughter at a water park!

lost

…thankfully, only for a moment.

But it is a moment that will last forever in my memory. I can close my eyes right now and relive the panic. Chest tightening as if embraced by King Kong. Pulse racing faster than an Olympic sprinter. Flashes of what if scenarios playing fast forward in my head…the worst scenarios a mother could think of. Praying like a madwoman both in my heart and on my lips to Almighty God in a way I never ever want to do again. All other faces blurred into nothingness as I searched for that one precious face that meant everything in that moment. A five minute moment felt like forever.

Have you had that moment?

A sliver of time that would change the course of your life afterwards forever. I know you have. Some are fantastic. One minute no baby, the next minute, BOOM! parenthood. One minute, high school student, next minute POW! Graduate.

Some are absolutely foul. A loss. A goodbye. A death.

image courtesy of artur84:freedigitalimages.net

image courtesy of artur84; freedigitalimages.net

Our greatest and worst moments marker our lives. They give definition and character to the story of our existence. My story, your story, is highlighted by our moments, whether we like them or not. And as much as I would love to erase the moment my daughter was lost from my memory, it is a part of me now and will be always. To someone at that water park, I am the mom who could not keep track of her daughter and irresponsibly lost her kid. (Ok, so it didn’t happen quite like that. But they don’t know that. She didn’t wander off. She just didn’t hold hands and in her following could not see us anymore. In that split second of panic, a guard asked if she was lost and took her to the security room just that fast. We were literally two feet away, but she couldn’t see us, so she was lost. And yes, I am STILL embarrassed by that fact.)

How do we embrace the moments in our lives that depict us negatively?

How do we make peace with the memories that reveal such dark times in our lives? What do we do if those memories outshine any good that we have ever encountered? I don’t profess to have the only wisdom on this matter, but I do know what helps me.

I try to remember that: moments

  1. Life is a journey. I can’t have ups without downs. And if I did, life would be dull

  2. Negative moments fuel the positive ones. If I can make it through, the joy that is to come will be that much sweeter.

  3. My worst moments connect me deeply in my relationships with others and with my Savior God. I am forced to be humble, to be vulnerable, to trust, and to receive outside of myself. What a great gift trouble can give if I can view it as such.

  4. Trials of life chip away at the rough and insensitive parts of my life and make me a better listener, more compassionate, more empathetic, and more humble. It’s a tool I can use in my life.

When I can remember these in the midst of sour moments, I can not only withstand them, I can incorporate them into memories with a deep respect.

If I can do that then you can choose to do that, too, because Me {n} U, we’re no different! We both have choices to make. Our circumstances may be different, but the power to choose is always ours.  And if we choose well, we can embrace lifetime changing moments and continue to remain

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A Resolution for You: A Revelation for Me

I was going to write about my displeasure of New Year’s resolutions. I still may. The year is young.

image courtesy of sscreations/freedigitalphotos.net

image courtesy of sscreations/freedigitalphotos.net

Instead, this is my third attempt at sharing my New Year’s revelation. It has everything to do with you. Despite my computer’s thwarting efforts, I insist on being victorious this time around. If you are reading non-jibberish, then please raise your glass or coffee mug as I have in a rousing toast: To Beating Technology!

Ok, back to the revelation of the resolution. Have you ever had a moment when you looked around at life and just said, what in the world? Things are so bad! I just had that moment. Looking at a book marketed for teens, I was blindsided by the mature subject matter, the flippant attitude towards life, and the absurd notion that EVERYBODY lives this way so I should just get used to it. What kind of future is waiting for my kids? Then the realities of life hit. I am all too familiar with the oozing darkness that covers lives with despair.

Death. Heartbreak. Loss. Abuse. Addiction.

Jealousy. Rage. Cruelty. Loneliness. Prejudice.

Betrayal. Desperation. Entrapment. Confusion. Pain.

 Real life is NOT  a cool tv show. Real pain does not need to be poked. It hurts bad enough as it is.

This stuff just isn’t peachie. But it is happening right now.

That thought sends me to a very uneasy place. As a matter of fact, this is how I feel: Hyperventilating beginning…panic ensuing…NEED. CHOCOLATE. NOW! Sad to say though not even chocolate brings adequate aid. I usually try to avoid thinking about the horror someone is facing right in the same moment I get to sit here and write about it. I feel helpless not being able to switch out that person’s life to help them avoid such mind-blowing pain. And if i can’t help, then I would rather not think about it. I would like to start my day over, eating my banana bread and looking at dressy fashions, imaging how great I would look in them (if I were 2o pounds lighter and just a couple years younger. Just a couple I say!) But I can’t. I am forced today to deal with issues.

That’s when I had my revelation. A New Year’s Resolution for you. Ok, not for you exactly but exactly with you in mind. Though I may not be able to physically transform lives–my cash flow situation will not get you out of debt (I am struggling to get my own self out of that!), I have no task force at my disposal to run down and lock up creeps, I can’t make anyone fall in love with you, I can’t bring anyone back from the dead (I am starting to sound like Aladdin’s genie)–let me tell you what I can do.

I. CAN. PRAY. FOR. YOU.

image courtesy of tungphoto: freedigitalphotos.net

image courtesy of tungphoto: freedigitalphotos.net

Don’t give me that face. I am not talking about making a wish to the heavens or hoping that the luck of the universe will help someone out. I am talking about the generous opportunity I have every day to go before the God of all and ask for His help. I didn’t ask you if you think He can do it. I didn’t even say He would answer how I want Him to. What I am saying is that He can. And if He can, and I can ask Him, then there is HOPE. The smallest light still pierces the blackest dark. This HOPE is a light. This HOPE I can give.

And this HOPE you can have.

I resolve this year instead of flighting from the darkness to fight it whenever I encounter it with His light. I HOPE this changes things for ME {N} U. I know that for me, it already has.

image courtesy of ponsulak: freedigitalphotos.net

image courtesy of ponsulak: freedigitalphotos.net

Pass me the chocolate and with HOPE let’s stay,

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Christmas Special for Me{N}U: The Same Old

This Holiday Season is full of what some call tradition…

I could call it the “same old thing”.

Image courtesy of kibsri/freegdigitalphotos.net

Image courtesy of kibsri/freegdigitalphotos.net

I usually don’t do the “same old” very well.

My husband on the other hand is an expert. For example, he can eat the same meal FOREVER depending on the meal, of course. While he was in high school, my husband was dared by his father to eat only pizza (his favorite food) for a month, thinking hubby dear would surely fail. My husband, and the pizza company, triumphed gloriously in cheesy goodness.

I can hardly stand eating the same meal twice in ONE WEEK! Even the tastiest of morsels have a time limit on my palate. Leftovers make me feel like I’ve been there, ate that–new experience please. I need to trade in the same old thing.

I need something different.

I am guessing this buffet-style of living strikes a common chord with some of you. If not, humor the rest of us and read along anyway. AYCE (all-you-can-eat) chains can be found everywhere. Their appeal, besides the gorge factor, can be found in the tremendous variety that each restaurant offers. Channel surfing can now be deemed a national sport due to the multitudes of viewing options in the digital world (so how comes there’s never anything to watch?) Go ahead…add to this list of overindulgence aka things I often enjoy.

I enjoy variety because I tend to get–what’s that word?–oh yeah, “bored” with the same old things so I continue on with this endless, and admittedly tiring, search for the new, for the trendy, for the exciting. However, I continue to receive a lot of same ol’ –just repackaged.

Take a look at holiday specials for example.

PicMonkey Sample

picMonkey.com

Most of us celebrate “the holidays” in some way and we each have our favorite traditions and mine are typically found in music and movies. I love Christmas music and movies! Take a moment and sing your favorite Yuletide melody with me. (You know you want to spread Christmas cheer!) My husband, the pizza eater,—not so much. He gets tired of the, you guessed it, same old. Same old songs, same old movies, every year. He asks, “How many times can you listen to that song?” And I reply, “It’s not the same song. The last one was a ballad, this was one was sung polka style!” And one of my fave shows can be watched with the main character as a mouse, or as a digitally animated old man portrayed by an actor of many faces, or better yet a puppet! All three shows based on the same book with the same name, and same endings but because of my distaste of the same old, I can keep all three in my holiday watching rotation without boredom because even the smallest variation to me makes the show just a little different, just a bit new. My family and I can chug down cocoa and gobble up popcorn for each and every one of them (hubby joins in for the eating). Holiday traditions know extremely well how to repurpose the same old, which is why I love them.

I’m good with the same old in a different way. Because it seems new. Shallow? Perhaps, but at least I’m honest. And truth really be told, the same old things aren’t what bores me, it’s the same old feelings. I chase feelings.

This time of year is full of feelings. I reenact the same traditions so that I can recapture those peaceful, loving feelings and share them with my own children and the people I love. Those feelings never get tiring.

In my life, I often struggle to stay content with the same old. Just today I got upset as my house was  compared to someone else’s and it didn’t quite measure up. Not quite big enough. Not quite lavish enough. Does that have to equal not quite good enough? I get sucked in to the lie to buy more to feel full, to look over the fence to find the greener grass, to trade up to be better.

The same old game.

The same old lie.

My feelings need to be controlled. Easy to say but without help almost impossible to do. I have to be aware. I have to be on guard. And for me, I have to pray. I celebrate Christmas because my life center is Christ. I notice that as I am grateful and realize how much God has done and is doing for me, I can’t help but be ok with my present situation. There is a wise word from the Bible which says: in all things, be content. Such a small statement but such a huge task. Did you catch the small but massive word: ALL.

In ALL things?

Without enough money to pay bills? With sickness? With loneliness?

My Fridge with Thanksgiving LeftoversWith leftovers?

Be content. In ALL things.

The only way I have found to do this is to take a page from that carol of Christmas and repurpose my same old attitude into something new. I may not be able to change the story of my life, but through prayer and intentionality, I can change how I think and respond to it. It’s my choice. My attitude. My outlook. My response.

This holiday and in this new year, I am going to do something different. How about you? Settling for the same old? Searching for the feelings of newness? Why not trade it for just something different. And the difference starts with
Me …&…U. Check out this list from blogger Ruth at her site living well  spending less to get you started.

Always-in-Pursuit-7-Ways-to-Be-More-Content-Right-Now-contentment-faith-inspiration

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. And let’s work this year on staying,

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MY BLOGGING STORY: GUEST POST AT CMB

I have a story to tell…

I’m sure you do, too, but today you can find mine at:

christian-mommy-blogger-125

Don’t you just love the coffee logo?

Leigh-Anne and Nikki have literally written the book on intentional blogging (for real…buy it on their site) and I am humbled and thrilled to partner with them.

Read it. Love it. Share it. And let me know what you think!

Hope you stay connected and I’ll stay

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