Category Archives: Humor

WWJD Powwow Style

Author’s Note: This piece is definitely meant to be a lighter piece. I do caution that it could be perceived as irreverent. If you’re prone to sensitivity to irreverence, you’d best wait until my next post. 😉

If Jesus were a modern American, would He go to a powwow? And what would He do there?

Most Christians wouldn’t come. But I don’t think He’s like most Christians. He actually changed His path to go through Samaria, a place the religious leaders of the day hated, to talk with the woman at the well, a person hated for unwise choices in life.

The Christians who did come would probably hand out tracts or try to evangelize. But I’m not sure that would be Him either. He used stories to teach. Very rarely in a crowd did He open a scroll or tell a sinner directly that he (or she) was going to hell.

So what would Jesus do at a powwow?

He turned water into wine at a wedding party. He scooped up children, hugged them, and blessed them, probably with laughter.

He’d buy fry bread. He’d smoke with the elders. He’d buy some beads and baubles to encourage art and work and to give to the children later in the day. And He’d dance with joy and laughter.

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Have I broken the 10th commandment with regard to male members?

It’s one of those days. I’m cranky, irritable, and not fond of anything. I don’t like men, and I’m not fond of women with a penchant for melodrama, narcissism, egocentrism, or gossip.

I don’t think it’s that I have penis envy either. Merriam-Webster online defines penis envy:

the supposed coveting of the penis by a young human female which is held in Freudian psychoanalytic theory to lead to feelings of inferiority and defensive or compensatory behavior

I see five main criteria

  • Coveting
  • Young human female
  • Inferiority
  • Defensive
  • Compensatory

First, I’m not young enough to be in the category of young human female. After all, I have two marriages and two c-sections under my belt. And on a day without coffee, I might not be human. 😉
Criteria Met = NO

I don’t feel inferior. Although, there have been many attempts at making me see myself as inferior, and sometimes I have fallen victim to inferiority feelings.  I do not in general for the majority of the time feel inferior.
Criteria Met = NO

Am I defensive? Hell, yeah! I come from a long line of strong women on both sides of my family. I’m not going to take a lot of garbage, and I’m not going to let my family take garbage. So maybe I do meet this criteria.
Criteria Met = Yes

Compensatory behavior is hard to see as a real criteria. The job of any strong woman is to identify obstacles and when they cannot be destroyed to find ways around them. So, while I might not be able to move an entire tree by sawing the trunk and dragging it like a man, I can chop away branch by branch. It might take longer, but the job is still done. It’s not really compensation; it’s creative problem solving.
Criteria Met = NO

Let’s move to the coveting of the male member. Covet is defined as “to wish for eagerly” or “to have an inordinate or wrongful desire.” I do not want one of those monstrosities attached to my body. Early in life, it tells on you when your thoughts are impure by standing at attention. Later in life, it refuses to rise to the occasion and then dribbles all over your clothes, making more work for you (or your partner — or so I’m told).
Criteria Met = NO

So, with only 1 in 5 criteria achieved, at a 20%, I do not meet the 80% necessary for a successful completion of any test anywhere.

So what is my problem? My problem is that I’ve let my attitude be colored by misogynists and the women they’ve trashed. When you disrespect a woman, you take away something from her–whether it’s the respect of her community, the respect of her children, or the respect she has for herself. The disrespect does not have a trickle down effect; it’s more likely to have the effect of a boulder in a pond creating a concentric lahar.

*sighs*

I cannot change others. I can only change myself–my thoughts, words, and actions. Think I need to go back to my own advice in the last few lines at the end of Repent, Rinse, Repeat

Relationships a la Dr. Seuss

My sprocket and my socket can’t connect.
My two male ends are in disconnect.
The pieces of the puzzle jumbled won’t fit.
Why does it take so long to commit?

Easy come, easy go,
And yet I don’t know
Why I stay
When from people I want to be away.

I’d like to quit.
Yet I must admit
The heart wants what the heart wants,
But the brain screams, “Stop at once!”

My head is reeling.
My heart’s unfeeling.
The end of this poem won’t come easy,
So I’ll stop before my audience is queasy.

Devil’s Advocate/Job’s Advocate?

I’ve been thinking, very dangerous I know. The term “devil’s advocate” always caused something in me to cringe.

Typically, we mean it to be a person who decides to argue for an unpopular or unreasonable cause simply to hold debate or have the cause investigated more thoroughly.

Historically, it was a term tied to the Latin Rite Catholic church. During the canonization process (way to name someone a saint), the sole job of the person who filled this role was to tear the canonization candidate to shreds.

Pretty much, the Latin Rite wanted to be very sure candidates for sainthood were very worthy, and the devil’s advocate’s (whoa, wonder if that’s turned possessive properly) sole role was to bring up all points of unworthiness.

Either way, if I really love my Deity, why would I want to take the name of my Deity’s enemy even in jest? (Although C. S. Lewis, Paul Harvey, and Frank Peretti all did excellent jobs of trying to think like the enemy, but that’s best left for another blog post, and I digress.)

What if, just for the sake of fun, we tried promoting a new term for this role of arguing for an unpopular or unreasonable cause? What if we coined the term, “Job’s advocate”?

Why Job?

In the Bible, for his day, Job was very good at following God’s rules, loving everyone, and managing everything thing well. So good, that the devil went into heaven to challenge God, claiming he (the devil) could knock Job on his butt and Job would stop all the God nonsense. God permitted the devil to try to take everything from Job in terms of property and livestock.

The devil goes to earth. By the end of the day, Job had no livestock (all stolen), no children (all killed due to a freaky desert windstorm), and not much property left. But that Job was still faithful, and he chose not to sin.

The next day, the devil again manages to get into heaven and challenge God about knocking Job down. So God permits the devil to take Job’s health but his life had to be spared. So the devil goes to earth and arranges for Job to break out in sores; not only would this be painful, but eventually it could result in Job being labelled unclean and getting kicked out of the community.

Job’s wife starts to nag and get shrewish. His friends can offer no clues. However, as time passes and chapters close, Job gets frustrated and pours out his heart, while his friends start to argue that he (Job) must have sinned somewhere or all this calamity would not have befallen him.

Chapter after chapter, Job maintains confusion and innocence and expresses frustration, while his friends insist on his sinfulness. After 35ish chapters, God has mercy and intervenes. He begins asking Job question upon question; each question reveals something of God’s nature as Creator.

When after two chapter of questions Job has no answer other than “I’m not worthy; I’ll shut up (Job 40:4-5),” God continues asking more nature-revealing questions and then spends a whole chapter in discussing His design decisions for leviathan, some kind of very large and scary creature.

Job admitted he had no answers to God’s questions and he was going to go repent. God then turned on the three friends and accused them of lying about His nature; He also gave them some instructions about “I’m sorry” sacrifices.

In the end of the last chapter, Job prays and his friends follow through. For his faithfulness, Job gets a celebratory party from his remaining family, as well as gold and silver tokens to begin to rebuild. By the end of Job’s life, God has blessed him with 10 children who are more fair and attractive than all the neighborhood kids; his livestock menagerie was far greater than what he lost, and he got to see his kids, grandkids, great-grandkids, and maybe even great-great-grandkids (if I have the whole fourth generation thing right).

So that’s why I’d propose using Job’s advocate… things turned out unreasonably, illogically, hopelessly well despite all his problems (and you’d probably propose that this just wasn’t worth the read)! 🙂

“Red Devil Savage”

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On a recent trip to Central NY, I visited an museum dedicated to Native Americans. We started with viewing prehistoric pieces, then moved into the Revolutionary War era, and on to Modern artifacts.

You can imagine my shock when I rounded a corner and saw this particular piece staring me in the face. It is officially titled “Red Devil Savage.” It was created in 1999 by Zenja Hyde. I can’t begin to pronounce or reproduce the names of her tribal affiliations. Somehow, she did it in acrylic medium.

You’d think I’d be offended. But I wasn’t. I was confused… until I read the backstory.

Zenja loves her people and does (or loved and did) protests to support their causes. Unfortunately, those who are non-Native (the museum’s words, but you could probably translate them as Anglos or Caucasians) can be mean spirited and downright cruel in their criticisms, resorting to name calling and judgments.

She choose to create a cartoon icon for herself. She took their words, made a comic, and on the unused spaces listed every cruel name under the sun she had been called.

She took those words meant to stop her in her tracks, to bind her in inaction, and she turned them into a light-hearted piece of art that brought her to a place of peace.

I wonder how many of us non-Natives could take cruelty and its related anger and pain and create something to make the world a brighter place.

Please Explain…

Author’s Note: This is going to be one of those controversial adult topic posts. I’m struggling and confused.

I understand, just barely, the whole transgendered thing. You feel in your mind and spirit that you identify with the opposite gender of the body you have. That’s hard.

But what I don’t understand is why those who are transgendered with male bodies and female minds and spirits have to push on the whole restroom thing. These individuals are not physically female so why should they get to use the female restroom.

Personally, if they are so wound up in the feminine mind and soul, why can they not understand that some women have been so horribly treated by those who are totally male that the presence of anything physically male in the restroom with them could trigger flashbacks or other negative reactions?

And why can the government not just make a simple rule: go with your biology? If you’re physically male, use the male restroom. If you’re physically female, use the female restroom.

Why are women once again expected to yield privacy and safety and comfort to physical males, regardless of gender identity of mind and spirit?

And how would men feel if the most unseemly, hard-featured women started squatting on their urinals during “that” time of the month? The women may be transgendered, or they may be feminazis claiming to be transgendered in an effort to teach an object lesson through extreme performance art.

And yet, I’m now running into the question of what do you do if someone has been abused and molested by someone of the same physical gender?

Maybe, instead of fighting over idealogies, businesses could consider redesigning restrooms. Instead of rows and rows of stalls, businesses could create individual, private restrooms with locking doors. Keep them clean (translate sanitized and disinfected), and keep them unisex. We’d have fewer numbers and we might have to wait more; however, privacy and safety would be uncompromised.

But who knows? I don’t. I’m just a simple country girl. I can use an outhouse. 🙂

Mother’s Day 2016

This is one of those days where typically we think about our mothers. We review their achievements in our lives and consider what impact their presence or absence has on who we are as humans. If living, they may get the blessing of a gift or meal or some other token of appreciation.

Not me. I’ve often commented how I’m unique.

Me… I’m looking at the measuring stick in Proverbs 31 and critiquing my own parenting skills. As usual, I never quite make the grade.

Why? Let’s see it in a few versions…

She speaks wisely, teaching with gracious love.
(International Standard)

She opens her mouth with wisdom. Faithful instruction is on her tongue.
(World English Bible)

When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness.
(New Living Translation)

She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
(New Revised Standard Catholic Version)

When she opens her mouth, she speaks wisely; on her tongue is loving instruction.
(Complete Jewish)

She speaks wise words. And she teaches others to be kind. (International Children’s)

Okay, so they all pretty much agree on the first criterion: everything I say has to be wise. I’ve been falling short there lately, unless you count sarcasm.

  • Please tell me again how dumping five scoops is really good for the fish. And don’t give me any lines about the nitrogen cycle and growing soy… soy?
  • You can’t have such an unwise thought as putting the dog in the basket with socks is better for his joints. Especially clean socks… when you didn’t bathe him for three weeks…
  • Did you seriously think I wouldn’t notice you didn’t have vegetables in that casserole?!? I might be exhausted, but I’m not blind and I didn’t lose my tongue. And I don’t believe the oven gnome cast a spell to send them to visit another dimension.
  • Wait… let me guess. A good fairy is going to come and finish that assignment for you and upload to GoogleDocs. And then your grades will all be perfect.
  • Yes, please keep laughing at all the wrong times. *note this is the fifth correction at a non-faith-based public gathering* You will win so many friends and influence so many people to help you.

With just a week’s worth of failures of the first part, do I even need to go into the second part? Why, yes, yes, I do. I’m not feeling like a big enough failure.

The second part is about teaching or instructing. While I make numerous attempts, it doesn’t mean the attempts get noticed.

And then there’s the what am I to teach or give instruction about? Kindness, faithfulness, gracious love… The first set of bullets shows that I don’t live kindness or gracious love. The repetitive nature of my efforts could be argued to be faithfulness in action, or it could be unwise nagging (my kids will vote for nagging).

The problem is the standard society sets for me and the standard I set for myself. Society pretty much expects me to earn the paycheck, do the house, and make sure all my kids are model citizens. And then in a warped part of my mind, I have the words of Christ in Matthew 5:48 to remind me of my goal: So you must be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect. (ICB)

The reality is I can’t, and I will break myself if I try. We all sin. We all fall far short of the goal. In those moments when my failures scream at me the loudest, when I am most anxious about my job performance as a mother, I must remember the words of Isaiah 26:3: You, Lord, give true peace. You give peace to those who depend on you. You give peace to those who trust you. (ICB)

Jesus, help me depend on You as my children depend on me. Let me find trust for You in this dependence. As I trust You, give me peace, true peace.