Monday, August 14, 2017

A Violent Weekend


This was written by the father of a man who on social media had tried to defend his actions at attending a white supremacist rally in Virginia last weekend.  I feel for this man, and his family, who wonder how his son came to develop such racist ideas to think that it is OK to be a part of such racists groups.

I used to live in the Fargo-Moorhead area.  I know racism abounds there. Even though it is a town full of people who vote Democrat.  These same Democrats I know are racist.  

I take offense that these neo-Nazi, white supremacist groups consider themselves Christian.  Nothing they believe in is in the Bible.  They probably have never cracked one open.  I have read, studied, and learned the Bile for years and know that their rhetoric is not Christian.  It is from the fiery pit of hell.

I also take offense that they consider themselves Republican.  My parents are Republican.  They find the violent actions of these groups repugnant.  I know plenty of Republicans that are not racists in any way.  

Needless to say, to see and read about the violence this weekend saddened me. I guess I was living in blissful ignorance thinking that the KKK was no longer an issue.  I guess living in the relatively diverse state of MN I got blissfully ignorant.  I knew there was still trouble in the South, just not to this extent.  It boggles my mind that any one with a knowledge of history and the Bible would join these groups.  Nazis were not Christian either.  In fact, they persecuted Christians, and created their own cult-like religion.  

I am just shocked at the ignorance of these groups.  How neo-Nazis can deny the Holocaust is beyond me.  You can just go all over Europe and see the concentration camps.  Didn't they see those horrible videos in grade school that showed the mass graves of Jewish bodies?  How can they deny it?  

Some people may say it's just human nature.  And maybe it is.  Some people are so brainwashed into their thinking, whatever violent thinking they have, that they don't question it.  They continue to pursue it to the end.  But we don't have to accept it.  We can strive for better.

I hope that this father's hopes will be fulfilled.  I wonder if the son knows how much grief and sorrow he is causing them.  I wonder if this madness and insanity will ever end.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

I LOVE MN

People ask me why I live in MN if I hate the winters so much.  So here are my reasons:

1.  My family is here.

2. My church is here.

3. I've lived in Cutters Grove for 20 years.

4. I've volunteered and subbed at Anoka Technical College ABE for 8 years, and, Lord willing, am starting a part-time teaching job there starting after labor day!

5. MN State Fair, need I say more?

6. The Mall of America, need I say more again?

7. Duluth and the North Shore.

8. Moorhead, where my parents grew up and I went to college.

9. Minnesota's historic sites and museums.

10. Although they are short, the summers.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Abuse

Lately I have been watching Dr. Phil in the afternoons while I eat supper before I go subbing or volunteering.. I have always liked Dr. Phil, he seems smart without showing off.  Instead, he relates to people where they are at, but doesn't take any crap.  He's honest and will call someone out if need be.  Yet, he is compassionate and has resources for people to help them, from his books to his website.  I've never read his books.  I used to read self-help books, when I needed them, but now it has been years since I read my fill.  

I do want to talk about an initiative that his wife, Robin, has on the website.  Here is the link: http://www.whengeorgiasmiled.org/aspire/

This is a free curriculum about domestic violence, for all interested.  Included on this page is a link to a free app that a victim can use to call for help with one touch of a button.  

I have not looked at either resources, but from watching Dr. Phil off and on for years, I think it would be helpful.  Even in this day and age, domestic abuse is so prevalent, and there seems to be little help for the victims.  Not only that, it affects the whole family, not just the spouse.  Even if the children are not abused, they learn a dysfunctional and damaging way of relating to others.  Like with an addict,  the victims focus on the abuser, neglecting all others in the family.  The victim doesn't mean to, but they are usually so beaten down, whether physically, mentally, or emotionally, that they don't think they can do without the abuser.   

When I see this happen, it breaks my heart.  I have had friends who were in abusive relationships, and I wished I could save them.  I wished I could get them to see that they don't need this person, that they were of infinite worth.  But abuse breaks the spirit.  

So if you are in an abusive relationship, get help!  No one should be abused, no one has the right to abuse you..  

Friday, July 21, 2017

I Hope to Teach


 I have been volunteering teaching adult ESL for 8 years, and have been substitute teaching in Adult Basic Education for 1 year.  I have an ABE certificate and am working on my ABE license.  Now, I am applying for an ESL teaching position where I volunteer.  

For the last 2 weeks, and for at least 1 more week, I have been subbing where I volunteer.  I have been enjoying it so much.  It is a weird feeling for me when I teach.  I sometimes feel like it is not me, but a me that I don't get to see very much. It is a me that feels alive, and feels the power of God flowing through me.  It is the me that has no worries, and no sadness.  It is the me that I always wanted to be.

There is not much else in my life where I feel this way.  Relationships are a challenge, writing is a love/hate thing.  I rarely feel like I am my best self in these things.  And of course, the every day chores  I hate to do.  

But in teaching, I feel joy and peace, and I never want that feeling to end.  It's like a high in a way.  

I hope I get this job. I hope I will be successful at it.  I hope I will continue to feel this way.  

I thank God I finally found something that makes me feel good about myself, and makes me feel like I am making a difference in my little corner of the world.  

Thursday, July 13, 2017

The Merged Gospels


This past spring I heard about the Octagon Project.  It is live and virtual reality tours of the Holy Land.  You don't  need a virtual reality system to view them, and you can view them on any computer, smartphone, or tablet.  The link to this website is under the picture above.  The picture is of a Bible that merges the Gospels chronologically.  You can order this Bible on this website, either print or eBook.  I have loved reading it this summer.  In fact, it is my second time, and I want to read it again!  I love how it tells the story of Jesus in order, so that it's like a biography of His life in one big book.  

I have also enjoyed watching some of the videos.  I hope to go to Israel someday.  But I don't want to go with just any tour group.  I could kick myself for not going with my church years ago.  This is the armchair way of seeing the sights of Bible times.  Also, something bad always seems to be happening there.  Which makes me sad, as all these historical sites of such a great historical people, we can't see, or there is so much fighting over who owns what where.  I wonder if it will ever be resolved.  I think most of the people of that region would like it to be resolved.  But it's always those few who have a lot of power but very little ethics to cause so much pain.  It's like they have held the Holy Land hostage for destruction.  

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Independence Day

All Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.


We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

I'm Wrong?


A few weeks ago some people told me I don't always have to be right.  I think I have been told this for many years, but never really listened until now.  

I think I never realized that I did this, that I always argue and tried to correct people.  I mean, I knew, but I didn't realize how much it hurt people.  My family seemed  to tolerate and even laugh, until it got to be too much, even for them.  

For a while there I felt such remorse and regret.  I watch Big Bang Theory and laugh at Sheldon, knowing that I am like him too in some ways.  But TV is not real life.  Real people have feelings.  

I finally thought to myself, "It isn't about being right, it's about being loving."  And I have to keep reminding myself of this.  Because it is so easy to act like I know everything.  I forget that sometimes people don't like that and they might feel hurt.  The last thing I ever wanted to do is hurt people's feelings.  Then I find out I have.  And it broke my heart.

So here I am telling the world that I have this problem.  I will probably always have this problem.  But as they say, knowledge is the first step.  Now I know, I can hopefully become more aware of it.  It is so easy for things to come out of my mouth before I think. I much prefer to write.  Too bad we can't edit our speaking.