Category Archives: Respect and disrespect

When God doesn’t make Sense

Once again, why is it bad things happen to good people?

Because suffering shows what we are really like–what we are made of–our characters. And character is simply the accumulation of many choices. How will I look at this situation? What perception will I choose?

And as previously mentioned, I believe, based on several instances in scripture, that Satan asks to test each of us. He knows where we are weak, our Achilles’ heal, our tragic flaw; and that is what he excoriates. He attacks us because we want to be with God, because we are His followers, and want to become authentic lovers. He wants to expose us as posers, phonies, pretenders. So I have imagined several of these counsels in heaven where he gets permission to test based on some “truth” he is presenting about us that makes us unfit to be used, unsafe to have around for eternity.

It’s been interesting and engaging, but if I thought Leviticus was difficult, it was easy compared to Numbers.

I understand there are rules of engagement in every war–the agreements to boundaries that are supposed to be adhered to, i.e. no attacks on civilians. What makes it difficult is that God takes responsibility for everything They allow, as well as what They decide and execute. So some of what looks like it’s coming from God isn’t Their ideas or actions; it’s just allowed. Sometimes it’s pretty clear. Other times, not. For instance, why 40 years in the wilderness?

I admit. I’m stumped. Ordinarily, I would say this is Satan’s engineering. And it could be, but it seems to be a theme that becomes the day for a year theory in prophecy after that. Would God go by something Satan demanded once? It seems unlikely. But as of yet, it doesn’t seem to make sense to me; and if you know me, God has to make sense: that is one of my tenants: Everything God does makes sense if you know Them and understand the big picture. That represents the revealed things, the actions in our world, the things we can understand–not the mystery that is beyond us. I’m good with that, but not good with being too lazy to try to understand.

But based on the first 5 episodes, even God’s strange acts make sense, if you think cosmically. That may not be a word yet, but I’m referring to thinking from a cosmic perspective. Knowing Him (Them) and knowing the people, I can’t figure out even from the big-picture, universal-war perspective,  why He would give them, in this situation, a year for a day. It doesn’t make any sense yet. So back to more time with God. I’ve been to this place several times, and He has always shown me something I’ve overlooked or didn’t understand. I’m sure Ruach will do it again!

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Filed under A God perspective, a perspective on evil, Love ed, Loved, Respect and disrespect, suffering, Uncategorized, What is God like?, When religion gets it wrong...

A Perspective Excerpt from Love’s Playbook 5

I’ve decided to share a couple of pages from the book I’m working on. It’s book five in the series: Exodus and the plagues. This is a break in the story for a new perspective.

“Whether or not Satan can create brings up an interesting question. Does God create destructive elements—in this case flies? Egypt has historically had the dog fly. It is large and venomous with a painful bite. And this one God instructed Moses to tell Pharaoh would not come on the Hebrews because God would make a distinction between Egypt and His special people.

It’s possible the first three hadn’t affected them either, but this is the first time God specifically tells Pharaoh it won’t, to make sure he is aware of it. Does God protect his own people from God? Or from enemies?

Back to the original question. It is true Satan doesn’t have ability to create life from nothing. But we have all seen how he can twist God’s gifts to create aberrations. Look at the suffering and disease he has created from sex. Or just the diseases he creates in us from ignorance and from taste, let alone viruses he creates. Remember in this series how Lucifer was given the chance to study the laws of nature and see what he could create. No doubt, he learned a lot about nature and its laws.

At that time he was still under God’s influence, and getting to fulfil his dream. He had not yet defected and activated the law of sin and death. But imagine what he must have done in the lab after he had activated entropy. He is called “the destroyer” in Exodus 12:23 and also in the book of Hebrews (2:14). He would destroy all of us (or have us destroy each other) if God allowed. It’s who he has become.

This is the first plague where it says the land was corrupted—literally the Hebrew is “the land was destroyed.” Would God have done this? Or would he have allowed the dark side to do their thing? I think it is the latter. I don’t believe God is the creator of evil. I think it is the absence of good as death is the absence of life.

Yes, They allow it to exist for choices, but They are winning the “right” now to banish evil, keeping it only as a personal choice forever, because it brings death. God has allowed Satan to have the power of death as long as he is kept alive. When God stops shielding him, he and all of his will cease to exist. Evil can’t exist in God’s presence. Revelation 20 says death and hell will be thrown into the lake of fire which is simply a metaphor for the dark side rushing into God’s unbridled energy to take his new city. (See Rev. 20:7-10.)

So why haven’t we questioned this before? We didn’t have the perspective. Our collective consciousness thought God does what He wants to because He is God, and thought the fear of God was literal along with other metaphors. Most people served God from fear—not what God wants! Now we know that another translation is more accurate: fear is best translated reverence or respect.

So why did God allow this? Because to protect our freedom there has to be hooks to hang doubt on. God can’t make everything completely plain until someone asks. Some things had to be shrouded in mystery until we started questioning and searching for a better understanding.

I don’t suppose I am the first one to question or understand this, just one who dares to interpret scripture this way, write it down and publish it.”

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Filed under A God perspective, a perspective on evil, Becoming real, Living well, Love ed, Respect and disrespect, Separation, suffering, Uncategorized, What is God like?, When religion gets it wrong...

Don’t Try This With a Narcissist | Narcissistic Personality Disorder Blog

“There is a story I love about a butterfly struggling to leave it’s cocoon, it is tempting for someone watching to want to try and help – because the whole process looks so painful and takes many hours. But if you step in and cut the cocoon off the butterfly it will never leave the ground and soon die – because forcing itself out of the cocoon is what pushes the newly hatched insects vital fluids into its wings.”

This link is from a couple in Australia who have a recovering narcissist/codependent marriage. They have powerful support and a great ministry around their own experience. I don’t know if Steve was a clinical NPD; he sounds more like a programmed one or the son of an NPD, but they have great articles and books, and do an excellent job of getting information and support and HOPE to those in these kinds of marriages.

via Don’t Try This With a Narcissist | Narcissistic Personality Disorder Blog.

 

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Filed under Bullying, divorce, Help with Narcissism--, Love ed, Marriage, Mental Health, Respect and disrespect, Uncategorized

Don’t Pursue a Distancer

My husband has gotten into the ten-second rule, and I like it.

I read my blogs to him to see if he approves before I post them, and it’s very helpful because he’s a voracious reader. So for the past three days, whenever one of us gets negative or critical, he’s been saying, “Ok you’ve got three seconds,” or he starts counting seconds. When I realized what he was doing, I got into it, and it has been good–even fun. It’s a great boundary, and incorporates another relationship strategy of working on the same issue consciously at the same time. That is how you shorten the constant of distance between you.

That just means that everyone gets together at an emotional distance that is tolerable for them, and that becomes a constant in the relationship. If something causes one of you to distance, the other one will pursue to keep the constant distance, otherwise you both get uncomfortable. Status quo is powerful and causes you to do this back and forth distance-pursuer dance. But if one of you crashes and burns in an affair or addiction, the other needs to step back, even if it means leaving, until the burnt one recognizes the distance shift and cares enough to choose help. Then the partner can come back, otherwise they are enabling.

To change the constant distance, you both have to recognize that you want to, and you want to be closer. So you have to do the same thing at the same time (pursue) in order to lessen the distance. It’s a great thing to learn. The axiom goes, “Don’t ever pursue a Distancer. And don’t give a Pursuer an inch of slack.” Or in other words–if your partner distances, distance. If your partner pursues, pursue. Mirror them (unless they are crashing and burning.) That is the way to become closer.

 

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Filed under Becoming real, Bullying, Living well, Love ed, Marriage, Mental Health, Respect and disrespect, sex addiction, suffering, Uncategorized

Graciousness is for Growth

Wonder why you’re conflicted? Actually, I think it’s a sign of growth.

It starts when we are little–about 18 months old–and we realize we can go away from Mommy. I am separate. I am another person!

And I run away–into the other room even. And sometimes I can stay away a whole 30 minutes before I have to run back and make sure Mommy is still there where I left her. If I come back and can’t find her, I start to get panicky.

Individuation, as it’s called, is a life-long process. We have to separate from our parents, our family, and our system to grow up. Becoming autonomous is very important to maturity–the opposite of codependency: What do I think? What do I believe? as opposed to, What do they think?

And herein lies conflict. We have a developmental task to become us–autonomous, separate, individual, and so it should be, no two of us are the same. But then we grow up to discover that we are completely dependent on God for life!

A fact that’s hard for some of us to believe and accept. And yet if you pull back the curtain and don’t doctor history, it isn’t hard to see. We are part of entropy. We tend toward disorganization and decay, even though we fight it. We are all dying–some of us faster than others. So unless God calls us friend, and rescues us from it, it’s over when your heart stops.

Even if we don’t fight each other (which we most always do), we’re fighting dependency. Am I strong enough to disagree? Will there be a fight? Will they retaliate? Will they leave if I say what I think? Will they still like me? love me? Maybe it’s safer to keep quiet.

Or the other side: Can I love you when you are so different from me? When you disagree with me? When you don’t honor my point-of-view? won’t even hear it? possibly can’t?

What do you do with that? How can you reconcile such disparate and conflicting needs? You can’t just take on other people’s beliefs and grow.

We are never going to think the same about everything. We aren’t built that way.  We don’t do well in isolation either; we need each other.

But we can learn to accept that we are all broken–all mistake makers–all dependent on God first, for love and security. And we can carry on learning to listen, respect, and disagree graciously.

But doesn’t God demand compliance? Don’t we have to agree with Him on everything if we are His friend?

No! He only insists on two things: that you love love (as opposed to hate and destruction) and that you agree He is God and you are not. Inside of that you will never run out of possibilities for differences.

If no two people are alike, or think alike, what are the chances that God is threatened by differences? I don’t think there is any chance.

I believe God wants us to grow up–and that means differences. He obviously loves variety.

If you subscribe, as I do, to the belief that God is NOT both good and evil, but that He is all good, then force is not part of His character. He can love you wildly, and still honor your choice to walk away forever–even knowing you will lose everything…

So sometimes He allows evil to show us it’s true nature to let us know choices are important.

He does, however insist on graciousness, even when setting firm boundaries. It’s how He can tolerate so much difference. As long as you aren’t supporting death and destruction, you’re good, and your differences are all good and welcome. He will listen.

He will even teach us how to be gracious so we can allow differences without wanting to kill each other.

But that might be why He set the lifespan at 120! For some, it might take that long.

 

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Filed under Becoming real, Love ed, Loved, Mental Health, Respect and disrespect, Uncategorized, What is God like?

You Deserve It

Have you noticed how this line has become the call to action–or at least the hook for almost every female advertisement?

It isn’t surprising. They are targeting women over 40, or at least over 35, and most of us were raised to feel inferior to someone or something.

Even if we weren’t raised that way, we felt it…inferior to men, inferior to prettier women, inferior to the smart kids, inferior to women who were loved, excelled, got things done, Mother Theresa, and on and on.

As a whole, we grew up “not good enough” and felt it most of the time. Notwithstanding the feminist movement (70’s).

Now, the 70’s have had their effect, our brains have been done developing for a while (age 25) and we are beginning to realize that we are good enough to be loved, treated well, respected, cared for, paid the same as men, etc.

And I’m wondering what they will use to hook the next generations. They were and are raised by women who champion women–who believe they deserve everything. Anyone under 35 seems to feel entitled to having it all.

They aren’t going to take anyone’s crap!

That’s what they say, and many of them can walk the walk, but underneath it, they still question if they are good enough.

Know why? Abuse, yes. But mostly it’s the curse. Not God’s curse; He would never curse us–but He did describe it.

In the beginning God created us equal to men, but breaking faith with God, believing a snake over our best friend, broke our confidence in profound ways. It filtered down to all of us.

Men have had a love/hate relationship with women ever since. They blame us, but have a hard time standing up to us in gentle, real ways. Force and violence come much easier to them. Or abdication.

What can we do?

Understanding the curse helps. It’s called “the curse of sin and death” in Scripture.*
1. It didn’t come from God–He is still our best friend.
2. It broke our direct relationship to God–that clear, true dependency.
3. It made us dependent on men. For centuries–millennia–we have depended on them. Societies were set up that way. Most of them still are.
4. We feel it. Many of us feel incomplete without a man.
5. Emotionally we want and seek a man to complete us.
6. Our first thought when we are unhappy or feel afraid or incomplete, is not usually, “I need God”; it is, “I need a man” or at least, “I need someone.”
7. But reversing the curse would be realizing, “I need God!”–exchanging the horizontal relationship we run after for a vertical relationship–making it number 1.

I’ve lived a long time, have listened to many people’s stories. And the only thing I have seen consistently work is reversing the curse. Find out for yourself what God is really like: He is crazy about you! He can love you like nobody else. He is gentle. He is strong. And He will never leave you.

And you are worth it. You do deserve a relationship with Him because He says so. And He walked the talk.

*Romans 7-8:1

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Filed under A God perspective, battered women syndrome, Becoming real, Living well, Love ed, Loved, Mental Health, Respect and disrespect, Separation, Uncategorized

Catch Joy

I know you’ve been sick at one time or other. We say you “caught” something. You were exposed by being around someone who has it. If you can catch something bad like a virus, can you catch something good, I wonder?

If joy comes from two main sources: the way you think and God’s presence, we might be able to make a case for it.

God’s graciousness wraps around your heart until joy is the natural result. But it takes time. It doesn’t happen reading a quick verse or two and running out the door. He’s been teaching me to just “be” with Him. Just sit in His presence and talk with Him like you would any friend. And realize that you wouldn’t talk all the time with any friend.

My husband and I watched a great movie last night “Another Perfect Stranger”–a very simple movie, but great because of the “presence” of the stranger–his sense of self–his ability to just be with her. The first time I saw it the strength of his presence stayed with me the whole next day. So I got it from Netflix so my husband could see it. Besides I wanted to see it again.

Do you spend enough time in God’s presence to feel His joy? Are you open to Him? Amazed and overwhelmed by the way He loves you?

Secondly, are you aware of the need to control your thought-life so joy follows? It’s a matter of being aware and choosing.

Your conscious mind can only focus on one thing at a time. Oh I know you have many things in your mind at once–I counted five I was thinking when I ran into the back of someone else years ago. Notice I said you can only “focus” on one thing at a time. Your feelings tell how you are focusing. What you are thinking about.

Are you in charge? or are your thoughts? What you allow in, the quality of its “presence”, what you entertain will determine how you feel.

You can even be like “Janay” Rice and convince yourself that being beat unconcious is a sign of love! That has obviously been her experience, her thinking, until she believes it. It is evidently working for her. But I can tell you as a veteran marriage therapist, that is NOT love, I don’t care what you believe. And she doesn’t look joyful. She looks beaten down–selfless. Battered-woman-syndrome selfless.

Good selflessness is when you have enough self to forget about yourself and just be. You have to have a sense of self that will not let you be beat down and call it love. Love builds up. Love should look joyful. Being loved is joyful–even when it’s hard.

Gratitude in hard times is called the sacrifice of praise. You can praise because you are loved by a God who is good, no matter what is going on in your life.

But that leads you to make good choices–good thinking always does–even when they are hard choices.

Got hard times? Start talking through them and thinking through them with the God who loves you wildly–crazily even. He will help you see new perspectives that lead to new choices. He will even give strength to make them.

Good choices make a good life–one that catches joy.

 

 

 

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Filed under A God perspective, battered women syndrome, Becoming real, Joy, Living well, Love ed, Loved, Marriage, Respect and disrespect, Uncategorized

rigid or Relational?

Had an interesting thought this morning–you can’t be both rigid and relational. Not really. Rigidity tends to squash relationships. Some of you are really bugged that I didn’t capitalize rigid in the title. You might be one of those who feels there is only one way and it’s yours–doesn’t leave much room for another person–their thoughts, wishes, idiosyncrasies. Don’t feel bad, I’ve spent some time in that camp.

I grew up there. My mother believed their was only one way to do things and it was hers. But she wasn’t rigid about her perspective on people. Maybe it’s because she’d been talking to God since she was 12. Literally, she would hear Him speaking to her through scripture–the first time was when she was 12 sitting out under a tree watching the sunset and reading Isaiah 43.

I didn’t think of that right off this morning, though; I thought about how I’ve had to grow out of my belief that God is rigid, because of course He couldn’t be, He is too relational. Many times I’ve told Him, “You give us way too much freedom!” When I’ve been realizing how easily we make mistakes–sometimes big ones–even when we are well-intentioned.

I guess I thought He was rigid because I believed you have to do things His way–like my mother. Scripture is full of details God gave to people, especially his “chosen people”. You can come away thinking God is pickyunish (that’s worse than just picky).

But here we must understand two things: one, He was setting up a symbolic system of teaching. Anything you didn’t follow to the letter destroyed the message He was trying to give. It got distorted because they were into just doing it and not understanding the symbolism or Him, which was why He gave it.

The second is that He wanted to bless them, not magically, but through living within the laws of their beings. He knows how humans work and what they need physically, mentally, spiritually, emotionally. So he gave them His “wisdom”–His laws–the way things work– so they could live in harmony with themselves and nature and be healthy.

He wanted them to be Blessed Beyond Belief, the head, and not the tail of all nations. He wanted to show the world (and the universe) that He was good and could be trusted, through them. Most of all He wanted a relationship with each person, but they weren’t good at understanding that. They’d come from slavery where the focus was obedience, and when they got free it was time to party! (“we can do whatever we want”).

God knew better than “If you love them they’ll be good,” where love is letting them do whatever they want. He knew they needed strong boundaries. (Lack of boundaries is the biggest problem in parenting today.) Imagine taking 3,000,000 fifth-graders camping!

They needed boundaries because of their mentality. Children need them to feel secure and loved. “No” is more important than “yes” as a parent. It provides security and strength–freedom within boundaries develops personhood. Children who have all the power in a system feel crazy and out-of-control. Many of them suffer from anxiety.

So while sometimes God looks rigid in the Old Testament scriptures, maybe the best word to describe Him and good parenting is purposeful.  The way he related was related to the needs and collective consciousness of the people. His principles never change, but his methods and rules often do.  God is so relational in the Old and New Testaments that most people think it’s two different beings. But it was the people and their needs, their perspectives, that changed so drastically.

If God is anything, He is relational, even quantum physics is showing us that!

http://Godhelps.net/God-in-a-Box

 

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Filed under A God perspective, Love ed, Mental Health, Parenting, Respect and disrespect, Uncategorized, What is God like?

Guest Post–Another Message to My Grandsons from Their Mom–this one about Love.

There are really only three.Three things I want you to know about life.. About you.I’ll start at the bottom and work up…

Beauty. Woman. She will get to you someday. You’ll suddenly notice.

And when you do I want you to know what to look for.

It will matter. Really matter.

Look closely. Very closely.

Don’t. ever. settle.

One more time…

Don’t. ever. settle.

There are very few Real women out there. Fewer as the years go by and we lose sight of what matters.

But I’ll tell you what matters.

The very top of the list…

Until He is her everything you will never be enough for her. 

Read it again. It’s true.

Unless she knows that only He sustains every. single. fragment. of her heart you will never be able to carry the weight of it. You weren’t made to.

You were made to be her anchor, her steady. The Gift bound in the privilege of Loving. Unless she can see you as a Gift and not a necessity, love will come hard. Only He can fill a heart and make it whole. We cannot ever truly love apart from Him.

You can try, but all those efforts will run right through her wounded heart. We all have wounds. You will too. Some, no doubt, unfortunately inflicted by my messy humanity. But it’s not our wounds that define us.

It’s what we do with them.

Who we take them to. Only He can speak Truth into shattered hearts and make them whole.

And Healing. Scraping wounds clean. The Refining fire. It’s painful. And most of us never go there. We live numb, surviving lives and try to quiet the heart in our chest longing for more.

Only a Living heart can love.

You cannot selectively numb parts of it. If you kill it, you feel nothing.

So let Him choose her. Listen.

Really Listen.

Look closely. Who is she?

How does she treat others? Her family? Her father?

It really matters.

Are they open? Can they talk and understand and move through conflict with respect? Do they live in a spirit of judgement or grace? 

Is Christ truly her center or some sidebar reference brought out only when needed?

Is she comfortable with who she is? A woman who knows who she is will make you more simply by believing in you.

In the face of struggle does she fling her emotions around looking for a place to land? A woman who know’s Who’s she is will rest in His heart. Stand strong and steady even as the tears spill.

Does she really want to live? To share the Adventure, the Passion, the Wild Grace He spills everywhere? You were made to live a great Adventure. Fight battles for His heart. The only thing that makes that purpose full is truly sharing it.

Is she Beautiful? Yes, I mean that kind. Does she make your heart flutter and swirl? We all like to say it doesn’t matter but it does. That doesn’t mean everyone will see her that way. But He makes every. single. woman. Beautiful and you will find one that speaks His glory to you. In a way that invites you to be more, do more, seek more. 

The way she sees you will make you more.

I have to say it again. The way she looks at you will make you strengthen in your core right there in that moment. Notice it. Feel it.

When you find her. You will want to offer your strength.

And everything in this world will try to tell you you’re not enough. That’s been the lie, the legacy, since the very first lie. The passivity inherited from your very first ancestor.

You must fight for your heart. For hers. You are the Warrior made in the image of the King.

This life is a battle for hearts. And when you find yourself woven into the Gift of a heart that belongs to Him, you fight. To protect it. To strengthen it. To value it.

Love is not need, it is the celebration of a Gift given just to you. 

A Whisper of His Beauty just for you to enjoy. Every breeze, every star, every ray of light, every Breath of Him expands when shared. Cherish it. Celebrate it. Honor it.

And know you are enough.

Real love. His love flowing through her will never diminish you. The woman, the Gift He gives, will always be an invitation to His heart. 

Love with your whole heart. When He whispers, take the leap. And know that everything He gives is always Good.

Trust Him with your heart. Always.







Posted By Loxlia to lovelycrumbs at 5/23/2013 07:16:00 PM

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A Perspective on Bullying

Bullies are insecure, scared, people who don’t feel they have power.

For instance, in school children where the news has been focused, bullies may feel scared at home.  Perhaps a parent is a bully, demanding obedience without consideration or listening, acting out his own stress.  If a parent is  loud, harsh and overbearing,  because he is much larger the child is frightened and intimidated. The child feels helpless and so goes to school and finds someone he can wield power over: a younger, smaller child he can intimidate.

Or maybe parental divorce or fighting is causing insecurity.  The child is afraid but has learned either at home or at school that it isn’t OK to express fear or weakness.  So he does what he sees modeled by the adults in his world, he turns his fear, sadness, worry into anger and aggression.

In psychotherapy we call this projection–putting our own feelings on someone else, or displacement–acting out feelings of fear against someone who doesn’t cause fear in us. The point being that we aren’t taught to be OK with our own feelings and work through them, or at least contain them without acting them out.

You can help your children by listening to their feelings, encouraging them to tell you about their day and then really paying attention.  If you treat their feelings with respect and don’t discount them, they will tell you if they are being bullied. Then let the school know, and if they brush you off, let law enforcement know. The bullies need help too.

Of course, the best is to bully-proof your children by making them secure in your love.  Bullies almost never pick on confident, happy children. They go after the kid who is shy, timid, or feels inadequate or bad about himself. Kids who live with disrespect, either towards them or between parents, feel bad.

Don’t be afraid to tell your kids that you love them.  Sometimes we think that is weakness–it isn’t.  Also don’t be afraid to set boundaries and tell them no. This also makes them feel secure.  Kids need to know that someone is in charge, just not disrespectfully. You don’t like to be disrespected either.

Let them know that you will always do your best to keep them safe, that they are adequate–hardwired for struggle–and worth your time and attention. Actually be present with them and LISTEN when you are with them. Let them know that they don’t always have to agree with you, even though they do have to obey, because it is your job to keep them safe.

Kids need rules, but not shame. They don’t need your anger or fear.  Children need love but not permissiveness, thinking they can do whatever they want. They don’t need bullying that pretends to be parenting.  And bullying can also be letting them do whatever they want and giving them everything.

Kids just need you to be you, taking care of you, so you can be strong enough to attend to them wisely. If you (or they) are being treated disrespectfully, set boundaries.  If your boundaries aren’t respected, get help; you are a victim.

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