Let’s Get Our Hands Dirty, Church!

stocksnap_psr38g3q9mPhoto Credit: Camilla Damasio

I know, I know…where have I been? (Cue mysterious background music.)

Let’s see… first of all, I’ve been finishing up my last semester of college. By the way, I graduate in May with my Criminal Justice degree! Woo hoo! It’s been hectic and time consuming to say the least.

I’ve also been settling in to our new home in Texas. It’s been fun but exhausting since I have a preschooler running around at my feet every second of the day. #onetiredmama

Where else have I been? Oh yeah, I’ve been involved in an amazing local chapter of a global non profit organization called The A21 Campaign and I’m loving it! The local chapter is called The Freedom Chasers and we go around to different churches, schools, events, etc… to raise awareness on human trafficking through informative talks, fundraisers, and community involvement. You might recognize the organization’s name because I wrote about their Walk for Freedom last year in which I participated.

In that same vein, I am writing to you today from the perspective of two young girls who got caught up in the seedy world that is sexual exploitation. Their stories are fictional but the details are based on real stories that I’ve read about or actually encountered. I would greatly appreciate your views and shares of this piece as it is just another tool to raise awareness among our friends and acquaintances on the horrors of human trafficking.

Click on the quote to go to the post and thank you so much for reading! ❤

Our world is experiencing a love drought of epidemic proportions these days. Elicit billboards with sexy imagery line the highways in anticipation of men wanting a pleasure break from their long and lonely drives. Women (and even girls) get caught up in the industry of temporary satisfaction in search of the seemingly elusive concept called love. They are on the receiving end of an unwanted demonstration of imposter love that reveals itself through association and expectation. Someone lied to them and led them to believe that they had to work for it. And the only thing that is going to stop their accidental pursuit of unhealthy love is a purposeful response of healthy love.

And One More Thing Before You Vote

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Women,

I appeal to you to discover who you really are in Christ. Read the word of God and find out what He says about you. It is critical to your overrall health as a human being. And it is critical to the health of this nation. Yes. That’s right.

Your knowledge of your God ordained identity is the key to a healthy nation.

Did you know that Satan hates women? He literally detests us. So much so that he came to us FIRST in the garden of Eden. He wanted to use Eve to manipulate the man that God gave her. This was the first instance of deception in the Scriptures. The devil is still using his lying ways to rule women today. And those of us who don’t know who we are in Christ are allowing him to do it. (Read Genesis 3.)


The primary thing we Christian women should stand for is truth. Not experiential truth (which is temporal). Not circumstantial truth (which is ever-changing). The truth of who God is and what He says about our role in the earth. Let’s take a look at this truth that stands the test of time.

Acts 10:34- Then Peter opened his mouth and said: “In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality.”

Women and men are equal in God’s eyes. There is nothing, eternally speaking, that can elevate the status of a man over a woman (and vice-versa). Believing that in order for a woman to succeed she has to climb over a man to get there is a lie. Believing that God favors men over women because she has been used and abused by a man is a lie. God loves women. And He doesn’t try to convince us of this love through a skewed perspective based upon limited pleasure or pain that this world has inevitably forced upon us.

He convinces us of His unconditional, unbiased love through His words of truth which speak for themselves. In no way ever, does God put women down or speak less of the feminine sex. He also never says that women should use their femininity to wield power around like a magic wand. Both men and women are equally and inherently valuable.

When we know that there is nothing that we can do to make God love us more than a man and there is nothing that we can do to make God love us less than a man, we are untouchable by the enemy of our souls. Ultimately, that’s the point of this whole living on earth thing, right? To submit to God, resist the devil, and then watch him flee? (James 4:7) Shouldn’t our focus be more on submitting and resisting and less on competing and cheating? With other women? With other men? With ourselves?

What if we turned this nation upside down by grabbing hold of who we really are and never letting go of that truth- not even to the highest or most charming bidder? Chaos follows lies. Peace follows truth.

I implore you, before you go to the polls and choose our great country’s next leader, to vote for the person who values truth more than popularity and peace more than likability. Don’t vote based on gender because you feel like it’s high time a woman’s voice is heard. (By the way, women are speaking up in many places and many ways- influence has nothing to do with the size of your platform in the Kingdom of God.) Don’t vote based on your own hurts that have yet to heal in regards to what someone of the opposite sex may have done to you. Open up the good Book and ask God to reveal His healing, comforting love to you so that you can live a life of freedom. The truth sets you free!


Your ability as a woman of God to walk confidently in who He made you hinges on one thing alone: Jesus died for you. He also died for men, too. Let’s see eachother through the lens of Jesus’ sacrifice and let go of offense that is dividing the church (and this country) in two. America is at a crossroads and the only way to choose rightly is to choose truth.

Hebrews 4:12- “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”

Photo Credit: Ben White

Walk For Freedom

Write Tribe

Hi friends. I have the privilege of guest posting over at one of my favorite places: Write Tribe. On the last Saturday of every month, Write Tribe posts an inspiring story with a link up for others to engage in a project bigger than themselves. This month, I got to write the inspirational post and I chose to talk about The A21 Campaign’s Walk for Freedom.

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Human trafficking is modern-day slavery and involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act.

This organization, The A21 Campaign, is fighting for the rights of men, women, and children all around the world who aren’t able to fight for themselves. I believe in the life-changing work that this group of amazing people is doing with all of my heart. This is why I wrote about their fight against injustice. To play a part, even if only a little one, in doing something to end this horrific oppression.

Please hop over to the Write Tribe blog and read the post. Awareness is the foundation to freedom. If we don’t know about it, how are we ever going to help? Thank you for spreading the word! Let’s be an army of world-changers!

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Judge Suggests Rape Victim Should Have “Just Kept Her Knees Together”

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Enough is enough. I’m done reading about sexist judges and intoxicated men that can’t keep their body parts to themselves. This is what ran across my news-feed today:

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I gasped in disgust at the comments of pure evil shoveled on top of this rape victim. So, I wrote about it. And I hope that this enrages you to write about it too. Or speak. Even better- PRAY. So, please check out my words over at Her View From Home when you get a chance and let me know what you think about this sad and very unjust story.

The Sisterhood!

Sisterhood is worth the fight. .

Hey my beautiful friends! I am over on Flourish today with a post that is super important to me. I feel like God has given me a voice to encourage and motivate women towards unity. With all the ways that the entertainment community, big wig politicians, social media, and our male dominated society has undermined our value, I want to highlight our inherent worth in as many posts as possible. This is what I wrote about on Flourish: Unity, Friendship, and Strength in Numbers. 

“The days we are living in are brutal. Our minds, bodies, and souls are literally taking blows from a variety of sources on a regular basis. Can we choose to look beyond a woman’s mistakes or opinions long enough to realize that God never called her to figure this life thing out on her own? In fact, none of us were called to be alone. It’s time for the collective voice of women to rise up over the nagging insecurities and questionable choices that plague each of us behind closed doors.”

Read more here! Comments are always welcome as long as they are supportive and friendly. Thanks! ❤ 

Want to read my other Flourish posts? Check them out under the Flourish Posts category! 

Morality 101

Morals are the undercurrent that push us towards or pull us away from certain behaviors.

Morals are the undercurrent that push us towards or pull us away from certain behaviors. Without morals, we would be aimless in our pursuit for right living and a selfless existence. In fact, many people are walking around this way today because they have chosen to ignore the morals instilled in them at a young age.

The thing is, noone can ever say that they don’t know the difference between right and wrong. Ignorance on the subject of morality doesn’t exist in my opinion. We all have within us an inherent sense of good and bad. Even people who are born into a family built on lies and shady decisions know when they’re acting foolishly or not.

Children learn to have morals from the adults in their life. I don’t believe that there is such a thing as “good” morals or “bad” morals. You either live by a respectable code of conduct (morals) or you don’t. I liken morality to integrity. What you do when noone is looking gives us a good picture of what our level of morality is.

Morality is different than ethics. Ethics are what we do in public out of obligation to a contract we signed upon starting a new job or school. They are a list of rules that we agree to follow in order to function in a certain environment in a positive and healthy way. They are not morals. Now, morals can contribute to our ethical stance for sure. If we believe deep down that bullying is wrong because God made everyone in His image no matter their race, age, sex, or abilities, then we will more likely stand up against this type of behavior in our work/school environment.

Our morals push us to not just say we are for or against something, but rather, to act in agreement with our words.

Morals last after we punch our time card at 5:00pm on Friday and stay with us as we dive into the activities on the weekend. Do we all mess up and do things from time to time that are inconsistent with our morals? Heck yeah we do. But people who are guided by that God-given inner compass (some say conscience), are known for their reputable nature and not for their uncommon and out-of-character choices.

I was taught that lying is always wrong and honesty is always right. This is not a Christian teaching; it’s a morality thing. My Christian faith feeds this truth-seeking mindset, of course, but other religions also ascribe to this principle.

Morality should be a black and white issue but, in today’s “get rich quick by stepping on others” mentality, it has become very grey. Sleeping our way to the top because we deserve the promotion is an example of grey. Sacrificing our dignity on the altar of entitlement is a common thing these days. Assuming something instead of asking first is another way that morality takes a backseat to selfish gain. Honor always asks and is therefore a mark of morality.

The bottom line to this Morality 101 lesson is simple:

 Be a decent human being. Decency can’t be misunderstood. It does the right thing even when it’s inconvenient or hard. Because living with morals isn’t about taking the easy road. It’s about taking the high road. Every time. 

❤ LOVE and BLESSINGS ❤

Harmony 

Some of us blogging buddies are committed to writing more weekly on our blogs! We have a variety of topics we’ll be writing about! To check out these awesome chicks and where their writing is taking them, click on their blog links below!

Aimme at mamacentric.com
Abbie at grumblinggrace.com
Emily at emilyfisk.com
Gloryanna at onlyaseason.com 

A Battle Cry for Women Everywhere

 

Now is the time to let the wildfire kept within our hearts grow out of control and freely kindle the collective female voice into a battle cry.Women,

Let the anger stir you until it bubbles red hot to the surface.

Give righteous indignation a voice when justice for your sisters isn’t served.

Be mad with a holy rage that crosses blurred lines defined by an era of ignorance.  

We are not made to be used. We are not here for his pleasure. We are not a tall glass of water.

Let the indecency of our “I want it so I will have it” culture provoke you to stand up.

Grant fury the right to flame high above complacency for the cause of womanhood.

Today is the day when the thundering cries of victims turn to resounding chants of victory.

We are meant for more than what we we’ve been told we can have.  

A good girl does NOT keep quiet when her mother is abused.

A good girl does NOT sit still when her daughter is violated.

A good girl does NOT use her manners when her girlfriend is corrupted.

Forget all the man-made rules. Throw them into the fire to be burned alongside issues of Playboy.  Douse them in gasoline and watch every last one of them crinkle, melt, and disintegrate under the white heat.

United, we can trample on the ashes of yesterday’s suffocating restraints.

Together, we can blow on the embers of today’s liberating release.

There is no looking back. There is no going back. There is no turning back.

We must violently blaze ahead gathering the wounded off of the charred ground and into our uninhibited arms, taking notice of the memorials hidden by the overgrowth, flinging propane on the crowds of weeds trying to block our path.

We are fire-starters, flame-throwers, torch-bearers for the ones who have gone before us and the ones who will follow after us.

Now is the time to let the wildfire kept within our hearts grow out of control and freely kindle the collective female voice into a battle cry.

For You.

For Me.

For Her.

Saturday Spotlight 4

Today I want to highlight Every Child Ministries through an article about a girl named Georgina. Mark Ellis tells us about Georgina’s life on the streets of Ghana before ECM took her to their Haven of Hope. She is now receiving an education as well as food and shelter. Her God-given dreams are being fostered in a loving, Christ-like environment. Take a minute and read her story.  Be blessed as God invites you into the life of a beautiful girl from a different country and consider helping out this organization! Thanks!

photo credit: Robin Sharma One of the best things about a new day is the fresh chance to be good to another human being via photopin (license)

Saturday Spotlight 2

This weekend I found a great article on the Christian Post about one of my favorite young speakers/authors named Jefferson Bethke. It’s written by Katherine Weber and addresses the very relevant issue of objectifying women. Below is the accompanying youtube video in which Bethke speaks about this topic in a real and relateable way. Watch the video, read the article, and leave a comment! Happy Saturday!

 

photo credit: Return to Godalming – Aug 2013 – Beautiful Girls Candid – Lost in Space via photopin (license)

Saturday Spotlight

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(photo credit: 2_DSC5500bw via photopin (license))

 

I am starting a new series called #saturdayspotlight  where I post an article of interest and see what you guys think about it. The one I’m posting today is by Hannah Brooks Olsen of the World Post and it’s titled “Why Some Women Smile at Men Who Sexually Harass Them.” I thought it was brilliant. She points out the fact that ignoring a male cat-call isn’t going to make it stop. I love how she calls courtesy her weapon and politeness her armor. Seriously, girls. She nails it, in my humble opinion.

For those of you who don’t know me well, I’m pretty big into women’s rights. While this article does border on male-bashing, the overall message was very relateable because I, like most women, have found myself in similar situations to hers. (Disclaimer- she does use a few choice cuss words SO if that doesn’t jive with you, skip this one.) 🙂

Check out her article and let me know what you think! Of course, I will only approve your comments if they are kindly worded. I don’t mind controversial subject matter but I won’t stand for rude attacks. Thanks!