Smile for the Joy of Others

Smile for the Joy of Others

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

I AM a Hypocrite

"Holly, you are nothing more than a holier than thou hypocrite."

The above statement was the beginning of an email I received from someone expressing their disapproval of an article about homosexuality I posted along with a statement of my beliefs on Facebook regarding this controversial, moral issue.

My first, immediate thought was insecurity, hurt and even tears. But as I thought about this letter and prayed about the letter, yes, I prayed about my reactions and the person who wrote it...I finally came to a peace and actual joy about it; realizing, there is some truth in the above statement used to begin this letter of extreme feelings about me and accusations against me.

"Hi. I'm Holly and I am a hypocrite."

I admit it. I rank up there with all other hypocrites. I love Jesus. I claim to live for Jesus. But in my humanity, I sin against the very one I claim to love and live for; therefor, in my sinful nature, I am, by all accounts, a hypocrite. I'm a liar. I sometimes take the Lord's name in vain. I am quick to anger. At times, I wrongfully judge people. I don't always teach my children the godly way of handling things through my own actions. I'm not in church every.single.sunday. There are days I go without praying or acknowledging him. I curse. I sometimes want to give up on my marriage b/c it's what would be easiest. I don't always love people. I can be very indifferent about the destination of the souls of some. I have celebrated the misfortune of others. I can be jealous. I can be less than kind, loving and patient. I haven't always and still don't always honor my parents. I'm a thief. I've worshipped idols (placing material things or emotions before God). I have gossiped and still do so. I have ignored "the least of these". I've been in less than glorifying relationships. I hold grudges. At times, I would rather be right than to speak or act in a way that would glorify Him. I'm guilty of 'prioritizing' sins as if one is less than the other. I have been and still can be too prideful to apologize and ask for forgiveness. I love money. Yes, I am guilty of all the above and even so of many, many other sinful acts as I proudly, loudly and boldly without apology try to live a life that glorifies Christ. So, yes, I am in fact a hypocrite.

But here is where he/she is not truthful with their statement. I am NOT 'holier than thou'. You see, I could never be holier than thou for the very reasons I'm a hypocrite. I am a sinful human, therefore, voiding any ability to be "holier than thou". I could never be holier than the one who created me...the one who lived a sinless life yet died b/c of the very sins I commit so that these very sins wouldn't send me to the damnation I so justly deserve....the very sins that make me a hypocrite...the very sins that make me unholy.

So after I licked my wounds for awhile, I am now ever so grateful for that beginning statement he/she made. It has certainly reminded me of the hypocrite I am and that b/c of my sins, I could never solely rely on myself for eternal life in Heaven. It reminds me of how much I need him to fix all the brokenness within me. It reminds me of how much Jesus loves me regardless of all that is wrong with me (my sins)...even so much he died to prove it. Thank you God, for turning a painful experience into a blessing. May I always be reminded of the hypocrite I am so that I may be reminded of just how much I need you. May I always experience pain so that I am reminded of just how much I need you. May I always be reminded of how much you love me so that I may share it with others who need that same love.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

MC Shockers Fall State Tournament

It's been awhile since I've consistently blogged so you may not know much about the baseball team, CB and BB play on.  We've been a team going on 4 months and finished our fall season this past weekend.  Our fall record was 8-5.

I can't express how proud we are of our boys.  We have been so blessed to be a part of team with parents and coaches who represent us with class, sportsmanship and integrity on and off the field.  This is a rarity in organized sports that can be dominated by politics, greed, bitterness, hostile coaching and parenting.  We aren't just team players but we are friends on and off the field. We praise and celebrate when every player is successful because each boy on that field has a piece of our heart.  We also encourage and sympathize when one didn't play as well and just had a 'bad game' as that can be the case with any sport.  We hug and high five much more often than criticize and condemn.  Yet our coaches have built a team of players that continue to improve in spirit and play.

Our boys not only represent the MC Shockers on the field but off the field as well through community service and support.  We collected pantry and toiletry items for a local family who lost all of their belongings to a house fire.  We recently participated and raised $421.00 for the Walk for Diabetes in support of a fellow teammate who was diagnosed with diabetes back during the summer.  Not many teams coach their players off the field also. 

I can't wait to see what God has in store for our team in seasons to come.

Monday, October 14, 2013

While watching NFL football last night...

Christian: "Momma, do young girls get press conferences?"

Me: "What? Son, that doesn't even make sense."

Christian a little exasperated that I didnt understand his question: "Do. young. girls. get. press. conferences? You know the reason they are wearing all that pink."

Me: "oooohhhh. No, not usually. Young girls don't usually get breast cancer."

Saturday, October 12, 2013

What only God can Fill

All of us are born with a longing and desire to be loved by someone far greater than any human is capable. We long to be loved with a love that no human can give...unconditional. We long for a joy and a peace that nothing on Earth past, present or future will ever be able to provide. This longing, this desire can only be filled by One and that is Christ. Yet we try so hard to fill it with but. When we reject Him, we then allow Satan to fill that longing and desire with deceit and manipulation using such methods as drugs, pornography, alcohol, materialism, sex and even other religions. Some of us even allow Satan to use friends, relationships, careers, sports, vanity, marriage, extra marital affairs, volunteering, parenthood, medicine and a multitude of behaviors that only lead a path of destruction as we try to fill that longing and desire. The truth, whether you believe it or not acknowledge it or not is simply this.... NOTHING.... will be able to fill that longing, that desire for a lifetime other than Christ himself. It may be fulfilled for a moment or even a season. And when the loneliness and emptiness return, we search other methods to rid of it again never accepting the one who created it in order for Him to fill it. You see, all those are just 'things'. They will never give a lifetime of the peace, joy, grace, mercy and love we, humans, so long for and need. Even I as a Christian will allow Satan to temporarily fill this longing when I fail to look to Christ for the contentment only He can give. If there is anything I wish for my friends to know is this...Christ is all you need to fill that hole you may keep trying to fill. I know it may sound 'easier said than done' but I promise, if you want it, He's there to give it. Seek and you shall find, knock and he will answer, ask for it and He will provide it to you. He is creator of peace, the creator of joy, the creator of love, the creator of mercy, the creator of grace...who better or greater than to fill that hole than He.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

God Made a Farmer

God Made a Farmer

Clicking the link above (God Made a Farmer), you will see a Super Bowl commercial that had more of an impact than any raunchy halftime show ever will. 

Regarding Super Bowl Halftime Shows

I can't help but be reminded of a song I learned growing up. As a child, it was just another simple chilren's song we learned in church with simple meaning. But as an adult, the simplicity has become so much more profound and the meaning so much more convicting:

Oh be careful little eyes what you see,
Oh be careful little eyes what you see,
For the Father up above is looking down in love,
Oh be careful little eyes what you see.

I know as my boys grow up, I will have less control of what they watch, what they hear and what they see.  But never in my household will such filth that was displayed during the halftime show be considered entertainment.  I know some will roll their eyes at my convictions but I have no shame of it. 

I actually didn't watch any of the game nor the halftime show.  But by the accounts of Facebook comments I read, the halftime show along with some of the commercials proved to be just as raunchy as they have been in the past.  I can honestly say, I didn't miss anything that would have made me a better person tomorrow by not watching it. 

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Wasted Time

BB after school: "I am so frusterated!"

Me: "Why?"

BB: "We waste 7 hours every day going to school and then 1 hour every night doing homework.  UGH!  I am just sick of wasting all this time!"

He Must be a Great Uncle

BB: "Momma, I can't wait to go to Heaven and see my great, great, great uncle."

Me: "Do you know who he is?"

BB: "No, mam, but I saw a picture of him holding me when I was zero years old."

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Our Southern Snowstorm

After a few weeks of rain and warm temps, we got to experience a rare treat not typical of our Southern weather....a southern snowstorm.  It didn't last long but the beauty is memorable.  School was delayed so the boys got play in it for a little while.  I was fortunate to capture an unexpected post card view of our street during the snow falling.  It actually looks like a scene from a mountain town but knowing we are nowhere near a mountain range, this view is not typical of  the rest of  our neighborhood just from our little house looking down our street, only.

I hope you enjoy the few pics I took.  Even my little Gizmo, as sick as she is, took a short stroll in the snow. 

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Christmas 2012

I know it's been a while since I've blogged.  I think most can agree that the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas becomes a blur with all the activities that happen.  When I'm busiest, I'm least prepared to blog with no time to think thoroughly enough to record my thoughts.  And when I actually have something I deem blog worthy it's gone by the time I can actually sit down and record it.

So, here's a run down of our Christmas...not much 'emotion' into it just a record for journaling.

We spent the weekend before Christmas in Alabama visiting hubby's family.  We enjoyed visiting and spending time with them. 

Hubby's parents then traveled over here Christmas Eve, spent the night, celebrated Santa and Christmas morning with us.  This a rare treat for them.

The boys enjoyed their Santa gifts. In typical fashion for them, their response was still reserved and calm.  They have never been ones to jump, squeal and show much celebratory emotion and this year didn't prove to be any different.

Santa brought motorized Scooters, remote control snake, new baseball bat, army role play toys, walkie talkies, lego type sets of planes, jeeps, and other contraptions, movies, 'real' Bibles and other various toys.

I surprised hubby with 2 rounds of golf at our neighborhood course, gift card to Chic Fil A (his food of choice for work lunch) and The Boys of Fall video he's been wanting. 

He surprised with me the latest edition of PhotoShop Elements.  I'm super excited about this gift as the previous edition I had was hard to learn.  This newer edition is much user friendly. 

I got several kitchen items.  I'm super excited about these as I have resolved this New Year to cook more with menu planning.  A new crockpot that is programmable, unlike my old one allows me to set the time and it will automatically cut off.  No more getting up in the middle of the night or rushing home to make sure I don't over cook.  Momma gave me a new All Clad cooking piece and my sister gave me a new hand blender with chopper and whisk attachments. I can't wait to use them in my attempt to cook more. 

We celebrated Christmas with my family the Wednesday after Christmas.  It's always a joy to see the boys excited celebrating with their cousins.  There's just something about cousins that make celebrating fun and memorable. 

The continue to be blessed and thankful for the Lord's mercies and goodness.  His season is always a reason to celebrate.