Shame on you SNL

snl
I’m going to be very unpopular because of this opinion – and I’m ok with that. I’ve never been one to go along with the crowd.  And I should have said this years ago… but it’s never too late to make a good decision.  So, here it goes…
SNL – shame on you!
When did it become a national pass time to ridicule and shame others? I’m going on record and saying I’m not ok with it and I hope others take a stand against bullying too. Shame on you for supporting the bully mentality. I dare you – try doing some good with the platform you have!
I quit watching SNL years ago when the jokes turned to below-the-belt jabs, when the teasing turned to belligerent badgering, when the parody turned to outright ridicule.
So there you have it – I’m taking a stand against it … because it’s never too late to make a good decision.  I’m doing some good with this platform I have.
Let’s talk about bullying for a hot second … because I know some people will try to shame me for simply posting this. And I won’t have it. I’ve been bullied enough in my lifetime to stand for it.
Dismissal of bullying is bullying too…
Some of my readers are going to say “Oh come on – lighten up.” That’s the danger in it. Bullying is often dismissed away with a response of “It was just a joke – lighten up!” Face it – that does even more damage to the person feeling bullied.
Let’s bring respect for others back to our values my friends. Let’s put others’ needs first. Let’s take care of each other. And find humor in things that are actually funny… not making fun of others.

Personal note from Lori: This isn’t in response to Melissa McCarthy or Sean Spicer or Barron Trump… this is just in general.  Ask me for a few reasons I posted this I’d tell you there are dozens of reasons I posted this.  Additionally, as I was doing research for this post I learned about the #boycottSNL hashtag.  The views expressed in this post do not necessarily represent the same views of all users of this hashtag.  I’m not attempting to bully the bully-ier here (like some of the other #boycottsnl users I’m seeing) just making the good decision.  I’m boycotting SNL and challenging others to do so along with me.

Who cares what the Joneses think?!

I recently received a blast email from a hardware store entitled “Want to make the Joneses jealous?”  and I cringed.  But I opened the email to read the tagline: “Let’s prepare to show off!”

And I sighed…

Various forms of media SHOUT at us … as if to imply that we just aren’t good enough and/or that we need to make improvements and/or that we should strive to make others jealous and/or that we need to do more to impress others.

Turn on the TV.  Check your email.  Read up on the news.  Or pick up your daily postal delivery… we get it from all angles.

No wonder we feel inadequate.  No wonder we compare ourselves to others.  No wonder we struggle to just be content… even as Christians.

But in the end, what does it matter to know that we won or that we are better or that others might be jealous of us?  What does it matter?  Truly?

It doesn’t.

That’s the point.  It’s a “chasing after the wind”…

The words of Solomon, the son of David, the king of Jerusalem, in the book of Ecclesiastes tells of his chasing and toiling and dominating and accumulating and working his tail off … and then, eventually he sat back and realized none of it TRULY meant anything at all.  Let Solomon, a wise man who made his fair share of mistakes, be an example to all of us.

He even goes to the extent of expressing frustration over gaining wisdom… as it seemed to deepen a sadness in his heart.

What do we take from this?  Our striving, our toiling, our labor should be done in Christ’s name and for His purpose!

 

So, all I really want to say is “Who cares what the Joneses think?!”

We should strive for that purpose for which we were created.  We were created so that Christ could love us and to mirror His love to others. 

Period.

That’s why we were created.  What do you think the Joneses think about THAT?!

“It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to…” and other reasons why no one likes a pity party

So the blog title might sound a bit judgmental, maybe even a bit in-your-face.  Sorry about that.  I really am.  But the fact of the matter is… we like throwing pity parties more than we like attending them.

Can I get an “amen”?!

I mean, truly… we can whine and pout and talk people’s ears off about why they should feel sorry for us.  We can give excuse after excuse as to why they should give us the puppy dog eyes.  We can complain until they take sides with us and stand behind us in support of whatever or whoever is out to get the best of us.

I’m going to put it even more directly – we can play the victim.

Wait a minute. 

Them are fightin’ words. 

Now that I have your attention…. let me offer something to think about here. 

May I suggest…. we can CHOOSE to let our circumstances drive our attitude… or we CHOOSE to change our circumstances, or our perspective, or admit that maybe our own choices got us into this predicament in the first place.

Yes.  It’s that easy.  We can CHOOSE to focus on the problem.  OR we can CHOOSE to focus on learning something in the process, or focus on solving the problem, or focus on keeping a smile on and allowing a giggle to escape… NO.MATTER.WHAT.

Or we can continue to CHOOSE to decide that others are out to hurt us.  We can continue to CHOOSE to focus on the fact that people will always have ulterior motives.  We can continue to CHOOSE to feel sorry for ourselves, in spite of how great we actually have it.  We can continue to CHOOSE to throw ourselves a pity party… and hope someone else decides to join the party, so that we feel validated.

In fact, if we’re the type, we can even use these instances to manipulate others into helping us get out of the predicament we’ve gotten ourselves into. 

But is that really going to solve the problem?  (Actually – do we want the problem solved?  Or do we just LIKE to complain?!)  Does it just make us feel better, albeit in the short-term, if we whine incessantly about our circumstances?  (Or does it even do that?!)   Or are we just spewing for the purpose of spewing?   (Come on, we all know people like this.)

In the end…don’t we really just want the problem to go away?

We don’t really like the feeling of being stuck in this uncomfortable position in life.  We don’t really like to continually say “my life is just too busy”, or constantly ask ourselves “why doesn’t anyone understand me?” and quite honestly we don’t really want to revisit this place again.  (Or do we?)  And yet, for some reason, we continue to CHOOSE to do just that.

I want to believe that instinctively we know in our heart of hearts what to do… but we don’t do it.  In that moment we have chosen to do something else altogether.

Yes, ouch.

So as uncomfortable as it to attend pity parties, we also don’t like to watch our friends throw these parties… and get stuck there… lonely and victimized (albeit by their own issues) and ultimately hurting.

Instead… may I suggest taking the advice of my brother Paul?

“Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies.”  philippians 4:8-10, The Message

And may I suggest contemplating some thoughts from one of my favorite writers Henri Nouwen… his perspective brings me back to the above statement E.V.E.R.Y. time.

“Joy does not simply happen to us. We have to choose joy and keep choosing it every day.” ― Henri J.M. Nouwen

 “Aren’t you, like me, hoping that some person, thing, or event will come along to give you that final feeling of inner well-being you desire? Don’t you often hope: ‘May this book, idea, course, trip, job, country or relationship fulfill my deepest desire.’ But as long as you are waiting for that mysterious moment you will go on running helter-skelter, always anxious and restless, always lustful and angry, never fully satisfied. You know that this is the compulsiveness that keeps us going and busy, but at the same time makes us wonder whether we are getting anywhere in the long run. This is the way to spiritual exhaustion and burn-out. This is the way to spiritual death.” ― Henri J.M. NouwenLife of the Beloved: Spiritual Living in a Secular World

“I have found it very important in my own life to try to let go of my wishes and instead to live in hope. I am finding that when I choose to let go of my sometimes petty and superficial wishes and trust that my life is precious and meaningful in the eyes of God something really new, something beyond my own expectations begins to happen for me. (Finding My Way Home)” ― Henri J.M. Nouwen

Mildly annoyed at…

Pardon my “sometimes I have to rant” post today… but I just got caught up on my Facebook reading for the day and am at this precise moment mildly annoyed at the number of posts I read of people (my friends) bashing the American way.

How does one nicely recommend to that person that they consider moving to the country that DOES have it all figured out? How does one nicely suggest that if they don’t like it they should do something about it, instead of just complaining about it? How does one lovingly … oh never mind, I’m just going to keep my mouth shut …

I’m just going to do what I can to make this world a better place. I’m going to be the change I want to see in this world. I’m going to be the best person I can be with what has been given me. And I’m not going to bash someone’s ideals or the pursuit of happiness or the fact that someone is just out there living life the way they’ve always dreamed… I’m going to do my best not to judge the decisions of others. After all, I don’t have to live with those decisions, they do.

And if and when I feel like I just can’t stand it anymore I’m going to stand up and right then and there make a decision to change something… and that’s going to be either my surroundings or my outlook.

Ok – I just had to get that out there…

The only good thing about Sandusky…

… is that he got caught. 

Disclaimer:  Maybe I’m too spicy today to be blogging about this … but I would like to look Sandusky in the eye and shake his hand and say “Thank YOU for getting caught!”  (enter sarcastic tone here)

But first I would like to hug the victims of Sandusky’s horrid lust and show them my gratefulness for their bravery!  I would like to tell them that they deserve better, that it is ok for them to talk about it, that their voice will protect hundreds if not thousands of people going forward… oh the trauma this has brought to hundreds of lives.

This hits a bit too close to home… as several people I have been close to over the years have been abused.     Not a single person deserves to be treated with this much disrespect… sexual, physical and verbal abuse is sickening.

In this case, Sandusky forced his despicable lust onto these young lives and in those moments their lives were forever changed.  The recording of those private, sadistic, horrifying moments will long live in their memories.  The recovery that needs to take place in their lives may take decades… but one thing remains, they are forever changed because of Sandusky’s uncontrollable desire to hurt another human being.

Sandusky, as a human I am sickened by you.  As a Christian, I know that I should pray for you… it will be difficult, but I will try to do that.  As a follower of Christ, I pray that God has grace on you… because you certainly don’t deserve it.

 

And a note to the people who were aware of this abuse and did nothing to call him out on it, or to protect the victims, or to stop his further actions… shame on you.  SHAME ON YOU!  Dare I say, no… I won’t say it…

(sigh)

Further, Lord grant me the strength to respond the right way when I’m feeling the way I’m feeling about this…  I want to respond like Christ would respond.  But in moments like this, reading the transcripts of this abuse case, and hurting for these victims it’s so difficult to not feel utter hatred for this individual.  Please help my frame of mind… I need your grace in this moment…

The good thing that comes out of this?  Healing.  More pain, but through that process healing.  Awareness.  The victims’ bravery will encourage other victims to speak up.  The coverage will shame and discourage other abusers into getting help.  And those who stayed silent through this will find their voice…

May the Lord be with those who are hurting… may they find peace beyond human comprehension and grace beyond supernatural belief.

Jim Carrey, Tiger Woods and his wife Elin

So apparently the media is blasting Jim Carrey for his tweeting about “Elin had to know Tiger was a cheater” (paraphrased)… and he’s right.

In my opinion, if a wife is paying attention to the needs of her husband she’ll know when something is amiss. And for the amount of cheating Tiger did… Elin had to know. Or maybe she knew just enough not to care?! Not to pay attention?!

Just a thought…

One little pet-peeve…

I’m rather annoyed by the people who complain about their special food diet … “Oh, I’m not allowed to eat THAT. I have to eat THIS scrumptious bran muffin.”, as she rolls her eyes.

Why are they complaining about it?! Didn’t they decide to pay for this weight loss plan?! Didn’t they decide to buy the plan’s over-priced food?!

To all the diet-complainers: I don’t feel sorry for you. That was your decision. Get on board and do it – but don’t complain to me.

Please.

And wouldn’t it be easier if you had a positive attitude about it?!

Decide to succeed and it won’t be a burden.

A quick rant…

For the record, I have no problem shopping at WalMart. But only before 8 am. I can’t stand it when it’s so busy that I can’t walk through the aisles. Why can’t I walk through the aisles? I’m glad you asked! Because of some dimwit who is so oblivious to how his/her actions are affecting other shoppers. Mainly because said dimwit’s shopping cart is completely blocking the aisle and his/her 3-8 children are running around like banchees… or the banchees are climbing the shelves and pulling puzzles down on to the ground and blocking the aisle. And I don’t shop there for everything… just a few things once a month or so.

OK – now that I got that off my chest… you can see why I shop at WalMart early in the morning, before the masses wake up.

Go ahead and start throwing your rocks. I know that quite a lot of people truly HATE WalMart (and I’m sure this blog post will garner some comments to remind us of a few of those reasons)… but it’s been good for my wallet. Call me a cheapskate, call me selfish, call me a sell-out, call me un-american – but I do not want to pay almost double for my shampoo or cleaning supplies. And the big box company has provided a lot of jobs for local people… for quite a few people whose smaller companies laid them off. WalMart has even posted some pretty successful numbers through this rough economy.

I am not the type of person to drive across town to get shampoo for $0.50 cheaper. But I am not going to buy it full price just because it’s at the store I’m currently at – unless of course I’m having a “shampoo emergency” and just don’t have time to wait for the monthly WalMart stop. But when I can save $15-20 on a few select items (shampoo, conditioner, light bulbs, tissue and toothpaste) you can guarantee I’m going to make a stop in to WalMart.

But, WalMart may have just convinced me to look elsewhere for my savings…

The first sign I read when walking into WalMart yesterday morning was a clothing line in the section for young men (ages 10-16), by “Jesse James”. The shirt display was right on the aisle, at the front of the section… as if to say “TAKE ME HOME TODAY!” Across the olive green t-shirt was scribbled “JESSE JAMES” with a grungy looking swirl and paint splatter on it. Very stylish! And a bit funny as well…

The news on dirt-bag Jesse James broke about two weeks ago, right?!

Just checking…

Yes, that’s the t-shirt I’d want my 13 year old son wearing (if I had a 13-yr old son)… I’m sure WalMart is going to sell out of those t-shirts real quick!

Good reminder, when we idolize people (aka humans) we will be disappointed…