Inferno

thatnewcrunchymom

An inferno rages within

Of heaven, madness, and sin

And everything that has ever been

On top of this volcano you’ll see

Everything I’ve ever professed to be

And that my freedom is not reality

Smoldering ashes grace the sky

Rage and anger keep me alive

By blood and ink I will survive

Your sweet attempts to pull me back

Will prompt the monster to attack

Due to the words that I lack

I won’t speak because I know

The truth that boils just below

To keep you from it I will go

Into the inferno
Inferno

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A Small Family Thank You (& dreaming garden update)

Following Big Family Homestead (and others in the homestead community) has also given my husband and I a shared dream again that isn’t being crippled by our current finances or his job frustration.

You guys, being married is hard.

Hard in ways that I never could have fathomed before we got married. Not hard in the screaming yelling ways (though we’ve had our share of that) but in the “we just aren’t connecting” ways. It takes time to be good at it, and when you master one thing you find another that needs work, or you’ve been so busy on mastering this that you have to backtrack and fix things you hadn’t been focused on.

Parenting is also hard in unexpected ways. It requires much patience and you can’t be assured of a good outcome until much much later.

Making a French Press of coffee instead of using yee olde drip pot w/pre ground dirt, also difficult, sometimes finnicky, more time consuming, and requiring patience.

It would seem that many good things in life are this way. So of course my weird little heart is starting to fall in love with our garden and dreams of a homestead of our own, where nearly everything is much work, not assured outcomes, and oh, also, this is how you feed yourselves.

It was in one of these difficult seasons of marriage that my husband and I realized we had no hobbies in common.  I like to sew, paint, write, read & cook. He likes to game, both tabletop & video, do gaming related things, and shoot. Our interests don’t overlap as much as we thought they did when we were dating.


So we found ourselves, five years in, with a tiny baby, having month leftover at the end of the money, overall pretty crazy about each other, and in agreement on The Big Things – religion, finances, parenting, politics (ish), and the overall quality of Vin Diesel films (Sci Fi yes, Cars no). But we didn’t have anything to *do* together. Gaming early on in our marriage was disastrous for many reasons I will not go into here. So we prayed.

And we thought. And we prayed. And we thought. And I stumbled upon these lovely people –

Brad & Christa of Big Family Homestead have been a huge encouragement to me, personally, and also kind of set us off onto the “eventually we want a homestead of our own” path. Husband has always wanted to be off grid, and I’ve always loved growing things, but we didn’t know/realize that there was a community for this, a cohesive term for the thing we both wanted but couldn’t name. We thought we were just weird. Maybe we are weird, but we’re not alone in the weirdness.

Big Family Homestead is very open about their homesteading journey and the realities of their life/finances/etc. Brad does short devotional type videos, and for someone who’s has issues with church, and is slowly dealing with that hurt and baggage, crawling her way back to the Body of Christ after being deeply hurt – it’s safe. He’s not telling me I’ll go to hell if I don’t do X Y and Z, but rather just saying “Oh hey fellow Believer, here’s a thought, perhaps you can think on this too”. Christa homeschools or has homeschooled their SEVEN children, which gives me hope that if she can handle seven (and not look like a hot mess all the time) I can probably, maybe, handle one, and not cripple her little mind. She also makes amazing breads, and I have taught myself to make Husband bread following their videos (Bread! Demystified. Woo!).

Following Big Family Homestead (and others in the homestead community) has also given my husband and I a shared dream again that isn’t being crippled by our current finances or his job frustration. It gives us something to do on a rainy Sunday afternoon when we can sit down and watch homesteading videos on projects we’re dreaming of or attempting the next seasons and work to do together when it’s sunny. We aren’t an active part of the community like some because we don’t have a youtube channel, and we don’t have a homestead yet – we have our little dreaming garden – but it’s something we share and enjoy, and I love it. I’m pretty sure he does too.

While there are many in the Homesteading side of youtube (I’ll link to some other channels at the bottom) what I love about Brad and Christa is that they explain things in such a way that you think “Oh hey, I could probably do that!”. They don’t put on airs. Their house looks like a house full of children and family instead of like a magazine, they speak frankly about the realities of caring for a special needs child (one of their children has a g tube among other health issues) and their content (with the exception of perhaps goat birthing) is very toddler friendly. To the point that my toddler gets excited to watch new “FAMY HOSTEAD”. It’s adorable.

Despite all the crap they’ve been through in life, Brad is happy and upbeat. Christa is pragmatic without being bitter. I guess it’s easy to seem that way online, if you really really want to put forth the effort to be fake, but I really don’t think that’s the case here. I think they’re just genuine people who love God and love their family and love homesteading. They’re moving to a new farm, from a one acre homestead to a 30 acre farm with barns, and they’re sharing the journey of moving and setting up the new place. I’m so excited to watch.

If you’re even vaguely interested in homesteading, homemaking, or just watching interesting things, I suggest you take a look at Big Family Homestead. Aside from the information in their videos, BFH means a lot to our little family.

So, Brad & Christa, should you ever read this, from the bottom of my heart, Thank You. We are so excited for what’s happening with you guys, and to watch/support you in the journey God has you on.


 

Oh hey, speaking of gardens, I have a little one. Stuff is happening. By “stuff” I mostly mean stifling heat, but none the less, not everything is dead, so here’s where we stand in mid July:

Tomatoes. We have fruit! But this fruit was already setting before the blight got bad.

Tomatoes, Abe Lincoln
Tomatoes, Abe Lincoln
This is gross AND frustrating! Double points.
This is gross AND frustrating! Double points!

This is still happening, even after treatment/fertilization. I am much frustrated. Yes we have fruit, but we don’t have abundant “LOOK I CAN MAKE SAUCE” fruit. We have “1-2 sliced tomatoes with dinner a week” fruit. We’re still buying tomatoes at the store. I don’t see any fruit that’s set (or any more flowers) since the blight got bad, so I don’t know if we’re “done” after this and should just yank the plants, or if we wait and see.

Our Bean Box! You could say we’ve let it get out of hand, but that would imply we ever hand it “in hand” and knew what we were doing. We’ve had four dinners with beans (five, maybe?) have have 2 big bags of frozen beans in the freezer. So that’s something! Does anyone know if you’re supposed to prune/trim pole beans? Asking for a friend.

Green Beans
Green Beans box o’ doom.

 

Tasty dinner side. No we didn't eat the huge one.
Tasty dinner side. No we didn’t eat the huge one.

That box is going to have all the bean plants pulled at the end of this month, get a month or so to bake in the glorious southern heat (maybe with a light layer of DE on top? We have beetles and snails) before having more dirt/peat moss added and amending the soil for our fall garden. Is it really a fall garden here though, when it’s horribly hot into October?

We’re hoping to try some broccoli in the fall (low expectations y’all) and are going to plant a lot of collards again this year b/c they did SO WELL last year, we were quite pleased. Husband really wants to attempt carrots even after last years dismal experience, so we’re gonna to try pots now. Pots of carrots on a patio in the South. Okay.

Speaking of planting, we got seed mail today. I was so freakin excited. Also, they will allow you to order stickers and a magnet for free. These (plus broccoli) are what we’re going to attempt for fall/winter. Any tomato container gardening  in the south advice is welcome:

SEEDMAIL

Big Family Homestead does a “seed swap” every spring, and we participated this year. We haven’t planted all the seeds we got, simply because we have to do everything above ground, and dirt/containers ain’t cheap y’all. I think this is a large part of my frustrations. Just planing something is a considerable time/energy/money investment, because we can put NOTHING in the ground here. Then it doesn’t bear fruit, and I feel like I’m wasting the limited resources we’ve been blessed with. But I’ve also learned that half-assing it doesn’t cut it. You HAVE to get good dirt, you HAVE to fertilize, you HAVE to water 2x a day on days it doesn’t rain, otherwise you’re just wasting money to enjoy cute seedlings that never produce food.

So of the seeds we got sent this year, here are three of the things that are actually doing quite well:

Behold! The Mighty Moringa! Husband takes capsules of this and it really helps with his back pain. So we're hoping to grow our own.
Behold! The Mighty Moringa! Husband takes capsules of this and it really helps with his back pain. So we’re hoping to grow our own.
Jalapeno. Which of course we eat very little of. Most of these will be given away. But look at how beautiful!
Jalapeno. Which of course we eat very little of. Most of these will be given away. But look at how beautiful! Dear other Peppers, take the hint.
Egyptian Spinach. This stuff is doing amazing in the heat here, and is really darn tasty.
Egyptian Spinach. This stuff is doing amazing in the heat here, and is really darn tasty.

The Moonflower (seeds I sent in for seed exchange) is finally starting to cover the bit of fence by the door. This makes me stupidly happy.

JulyMoon

Bonus garden friend

He was about the size of my pinky fingernail.
He was about the size of my pinky fingernail.

 

So there’s where we are with our little dreaming garden. There are some of the people who have helped us recognize our dream, and here are others who are just so willing and happy to put gardening/homesteading content out into the world, and absolutely worth looking into :

Guildbrook Farm – family homesteading in North Carolina. Good canning/gardening/prepper info. Thoughtful explanations of how they got where they are and why they do what they do.

An American Homestead – Completely off grid homestead in the Ozarks. They don’t have a washing machine or flushing toilet, so maybe too hardcore for me. But I admire and respect what they’re doing, and they’re full of good, practical info.

Deep South Homestead – Older couple homesteading in the south, full of practical wisdom & southern charm.

David The Good  – This guy is really passionate about composting, permaculture, and being able to feed yourself via your garden should crap hit the fan. He makes white boy garden raps which are amusing. He and his family live somewhere in the tropics.

 

 

Consider Thine Haters: Advice I’m Probably Not Qualified To Give #1

“Hating” can mean anything from verbal attacks & bullying (not cool), to simply disagreeing with someone, to a strong dislike of that person (unavoidable facts of life). 

We all have people who dislike us. Haters. Frienemies, Mother in Laws, co workers who rub you the wrong way, and people on the internet you’ll never meet like this horrible woman who wrote a diatribe on why no only children should ride in the fun carts at the grocery store (yes that happened. Yes she got paid to write it. What a world).

“Hating” can mean anything from verbal attacks & bullying (not cool), to simply disagreeing with someone, to a strong dislike of that person (unavoidable facts of life).

If you’ve ever spoken out, ever taken a stand for anything, ever succeeded in anything, or had the misfortune to sit next to someone who was feeling insecure that one day in sixth grade right after you got your braces put on, congratulations, you have “haters”.

I am “hated on” by some, and I have done and continue to do my fair share of “hating”, so as someone on both sides of the coin, allow me to discuss reasons why people hate, or why I have hated on someone:

Jealousy – Self explanatory. Get ya hater blockers on. Some people will hate you because you have what they think would make them happy. Oh well? Try and be gracious.

Loneliness – Technically this could be part of jealousy, but I’m putting it by itself for a reason: when you’re lonely, everything sucks. Sometimes we try to connect by lashing out. At least fighting with someone is a conversation. Someone hating you is someone having an emotion tied to you. Crappy human connection is still human connection.

Hurt – Was this person hurt by the object of their hate or a part of a group in the past? If that hurt wasn’t resolved, it’ll taint everything. This is something I deal with a lot. Old Paths/IFB churches are notorious for, as someone recently said “Not Cleaning House”. They don’t hold themselves or people within their organizations accountable and they dismiss those who say they’ve been hurt. I hate it, and as a result, I pretty much hate the IFB. I may not hate all the individuals in an Old Paths church, but I surely don’t trust them, and wouldn’t trust them with my daughter. Every argument one of them makes is tainted with “Well yes, but you’re one of them“. I’m not arguing this is healthy, but it does happen, and I’m not pretending to be perfect here.

Shitty Day – Hey, we all have them! And while God in his infinite wisdom created many people who just let that shit roll off their backs, He also made people like me, who are far too quick tempered and bitchy when the situation doesn’t even remotely warrant it. At least I know I’m not alone in my club – see above, the woman who wrote an online article about not getting her favorite shopping cart at the store.  Everyone, every. Single. Fucking. Human. Will make a huge personal deal about something insignificant/ take something absolutely the wrong way and lash out, because they’re having a day, at SOME POINT IN THEIR LIVES.  If you’ve not done this, you’re lying. Sometimes it goes further than it should.

Ignorance – No, seriously, this is a thing. Doesn’t really matter the subject. Some people have less information than you do, but have formed an opinion that they then take in as part of their identity, based on incomplete or miss information. Try and educate them and…things go poorly. For everyone. Or they have more information than you do, and when they try and educate you…things go poorly. For everyone. Goes both ways.

Fundamental moral differences – What you say is wrong and what I say are wrong are vastly different. And that’s okay. Until one of us tries to tell the other that they’re wrong. This can be seen in everything from mommy tribalness to the great political divide in our nation, where one side is unfeeling selfish bastards and the other is thieving lazy hippies. The important, imperative thing to realize is this – Generally, everyone is living/speaking/believing what they believe is best, and what they believe is right. Every villain is the hero in his own story.

People want to stay ignorant – Ignorance is bliss. I think the easiest example of this in my own life is the Cult of KJV-onlyism I was raised in. If one but considers a little bit of history, and learns but a bit about the Greek manuscripts, and employees merely a smidge of critical thinking, one would realize that KJV onlyism is bubkiss. And yet, some Baptist Preachers will die on that hill, that the King James Version of the bible is the only “real” bible. Okay. You can’t argue with someone who wants to stay ignorant.

They’re terrible people – If you’re a person of color arguing with a Nazi, there’s no having a conversation, walk away. If you’re a white person arguing with someone who keeps screeching that you can’t have an opinion because of “white privilege”, there’s no having a conversation, walk away. Trolls are real, children. And they’re often racists.

You’re just a fucking twat – I’ve been a fucking twat, quite often. I’ve also known some, and called them out on it. I’ve needed to – and I’m sure I will again – humble myself, and consider that just maybe perhaps, my “haters” had a point. And ya know what? Sometimes they did.

When someone is criticizing you, ranting at you on the internet or in real life, calling you a bitch, telling you that you have no idea what you’re talking about, saying this and that and your mom – consider their points. Because they might have a valid one.

This is true for your spouse, your old Sunday school teacher, that stranger on the internet, and yeah, even our kids. I cannot possibly count the times that I thought someone was just “hating” on me, when they were actually pointing out areas where I was morally lacking. Or ignorant. Or bitchy.

Maybe their delivery wasn’t perfect. I am well aware that mine is often not “seasoned with Grace” as Paul would implore us to be (working on it!). To completely dismiss someone’s message because you don’t like the words they used is the height of pride and arrogance.

And to lose out on possible correction or growth because it comes out of the mouth of someone you’ve seen in some sense, even temporarily, as an enemy, is grossly immature. (Past self, I’m looking at you and shaking my head). Weigh what everyone says to you. Neither accept praise nor deflect criticism blindly.

 

Sometimes we forget that losing an argument doesn’t mean losing part of ourselves and that being wrong doesn’t decrease our value.

So, consider your haters.

Take a moment, try to back away emotionally, and see if they have a point. Everyone has something they can teach you, even if it’s teaching you not to be like them.

If they have a point, reflect. Humble yourself and ask them to explain further. Engage in conversation if possible.

If they don’t? Forget ’em and move on.

P.S. – If you’ve got “haters” for speaking about something that burns a fire in your soul, that you have a strong soul deep feeling you should keep talking about, still pause. Check yourself when you hear a new argument. Then, let that assurance that you are speaking and doing the right thing encourage you. KEEP GOING.

Here’s a crazy idea: America is not a religion

It is very easy to be more excited about your nation, where you live right now, than it is to be about your Savior, who walked here 2,000 years ago. Be honest with yourself & God, who or what did you worship today?

Today is Sunday. When this is published it will probably be around 9 or 10 PM EST, Sunday night, July 2nd, 2017.

All across the United States today, Christian churches (not all, but many. Too many) took a day off from teaching Christ and made patriotic declarations about God & Country. The church I was raised in sang a song about how “The Cross is my Statue of Liberty” (gag). Pulpits were pounded, veterans and military were praised, and people were berated for having questions about the direction the country is headed (or for not having questions, depending on your political team). The Battle Hymn of the Republic was sang next to worship songs about Christ’s death on the Cross. Red white and blue buntings hung from pulpits and tiny hands waved flags.

It’s weird, you guys. Growing up, I didn’t realize exactly how weird, or wrong, or heretical it was, but it is in fact all of those things. I have no problems with any of those patriotic activities, except when you tie them to church, or make them equal with and a part of your faith.

Your faith should be in Jesus Christ, not the United States. Therefore, you should not worship the United States alongside Jesus Christ. 

EAGLEEEEEEissooveryourbs

So here are some crazy ideas of churches on Memorial day weekend, 4th of July weekend, etc:

-Jesus did not specifically endorse the United States

-Worshiping the United States is idolatry. Christ is greater than Country. 

-Christians who are not patriotic are no less Christ-like than those who are patriotic.

-Consider what exactly you’re doing when you drape the cross with the American Flag, or the pulpit, or replace some of the worship music with patriotic songs. 

-Jesus is not personally in favor of your political party. Every side and independent philosophy does things that would make Jesus facepalm so hard.

-It is very easy to be more excited about your nation, where you live right now, than it is to be about your Savior, who walked here 2,000 years ago. Be honest with yourself & God.

 
Don’t misunderstand or me. I friggin’ LOVE this country. I am “Don’t Tread On Me” (or “no step on snek”, however you roll) for life. The United States – Under Obama or Under Trump – is the greatest nation on the face of the earth. I won the genetic lottery to be born here, and that’s true for everyone born here, regardless of sexual orientation, race, gender or religion. ‘MERICA.

But this crap? This has to stop:

american-flag-wtf

Jesus didn’t say anything specific about the US. While the bible and Christ do speak about Government, I’m preeeety damn sure that wrapping a Flag (any flag) around a cross counts as Idolatry.

This is kind of a crappy subject for me. I’m way more excited, in general, about being an American than I am about being a Christian. Christians kind of make me twitch in the bad way, and Americans are….everything. From amazing to horrible and back again. We’re all kinds of crazy, a nation built on the idea of “GIVE ME LIBERTY, OR SHOOT ME RIGHT THE HELL NOW, CAUSE I AM PUTTING UP WITH YOUR TAXATION BULLSHIT NO MORE!” (paraphrasing).

Christianity, to me, comes with baggage, and being an American, to me, comes with hope. (I am, by the way, 100% aware that this is backwards. My hope *should* be in Christ.  I am working on it. I won’t lie and say I’m all fixed up and have my faith screwed on right, though. )

But even *me*, broken, bitter, jacked up me, who’s crawling her way back to the Body of Christ, I’m saying “Uh, let’s not worship the country, let’s worship Christ”.
 

So maybe, pastors, fellow moms, people in charge of guiding the next generation – let’s focus on Christ in church, and other things outside of Church. Just a crazy little idea I had.

Happy 4th of July!

My Zucchini Plants Are Dead & Everything I’ve Ever Been Taught Is A Lie.

They’re just gone. They never gave us a single zucchini, and then they turned yellow and shriveled up. I am at a loss. Year 3, no zucchini. Hopes dashed. Also my beans and cucumbers are full of grasshoppers and these awful grey beetle things. I got some organic soap spray, I’m hoping that helps with the beetles.

I’m pretty sure a flamethrower is the only way to kill grasshoppers. Oiy.

But! The tomatoes are starting to come in. They’re like 7 feet tall and just starting to fruit? Am I doing this wrong? Should I have not let them get so tall? Do they have too many leaves? Don’t they need leaves to make fruit? I have no idea what I’m doing. My green  bean plans are also huge, but making far less beans. Gardening: way more complicated than putting seeds in the ground.

These guys are assholes:

crawlyassholes
These guys are jerks

And what the HECK is this? yeesh:

 

20170620_135105.jpg
Eww what is it? It’s not a bug!

Also it’s almost July. Which means we’re going to plan the Autumn garden soon. I can’t tell if we’re making valuable progress, or just wasting money at this point. Oiy.

As soon as I think I’m good with something, I’ve got it down, something new comes up and I feel like I’m just not seeing all the ways I’m failing yet.


 

I was raised, as I have possibly mentioned before, Independent Fundamental Baptist or IFB. As some within the denomination like to call it, the “Old Paths” (they aren’t the old paths, the name is a lie. Shocking).

Just so we’re all very, very clear, Independent Fundamental Baptist theology is a cult. One day I’ll go into a post about that, but if you’re were raised that way, and you look into the red flags of a cult, it’s pretty obvious. At best, if you balk at the “C word”, they are a line by line example of pharisees. An accurate description of any IFB pastor, complete with the fake/”honorary” doctorates from unaccredited schools their friends founded:

Matthew 23 1-3 Now Jesus turned to address his disciples, along with the crowd that had gathered with them. “The religion scholars and Pharisees are competent teachers in God’s Law. You won’t go wrong in following their teachings on Moses. But be careful about following them. They talk a good line, but they don’t live it. They don’t take it into their hearts and live it out in their behavior. It’s all spit-and-polish veneer.

4-7 “Instead of giving you God’s Law as food and drink by which you can banquet on God, they package it in bundles of rules, loading you down like pack animals. They seem to take pleasure in watching you stagger under these loads, and wouldn’t think of lifting a finger to help. Their lives are perpetual fashion shows, embroidered prayer shawls one day and flowery prayers the next. They love to sit at the head table at church dinners, basking in the most prominent positions, preening in the radiance of public flattery, receiving honorary degrees, and getting called ‘Doctor’ and ‘Reverend.’

I’ve forgiven my parents, years ago, for raising me in this cult. I love them, I want them in my life and my daughter’s life, so I forgive them. I see them as victims stuck in a spider’s web as much as perpetrators of this awful “theology” that causes so much heartache and is not from God, but rather from man. From old crusty prudish men who wanted order and obedience and to feel important more than they wanted God.

Why do I go on this random and jarring tangent? Because I am tired. Because years after leaving I am broken in new ways over how I was treated and taught as a small innocent child. Because I have tried for years to reconcile that SOMETHING I was raised with in an Independent Fundamental Baptist Church was beneficial.

I have held on for so long, justified the manipulation, and emotional abuse, and actual abuse because I thought there was something good. WELL AT LEAST I KNOW SCRIPTURE, I told myself. AT LEAST I KNOW DOCTRINE. At least I know the Gospel

I can’t pretend anymore. God would have found me and loved me and longed for a relationship with me if my innocent self had never darkened the door of such a horrid place. If I had never been held down and beaten until my “Will was broken”. My heart would yearn for my creator like it did for years while I was there, so confused, so thirsty, so alone. When I was so desperate to be seen and accepted and loved as the mess I was (am), and be allowed to rest – God saw me, and loved me, and wanted me to just rest in that. And no one told me.

cross

 

 

In my head, I do know the gospel. I know the gospel backwards and forwards. I can quote the verses, I can state firmly that I choose to believe in Christ as savoir. But my heart? It’s been quoting poetry without appreciating it my whole life.

See, what I was taught was not that the gospel was proof of how much we are – I was – loved, but rather, proof of how awful I am. I learned, growing up Independent Fundamental Baptist, that I am trash. I also learned a lot of stuff that I am just now realizing, is crap. Such as….

Dispensationalism Isn’t supported by the scripture. It just isn’t. It’s a cultish theology that John Darby came up with and Schofield treated as it’s is part of gospel. I don’t know if it’s replacement theology that’s correct, or something in the middle, but…wow. Looking at it with fresh eyes, it’s a fresh crock of bullshit. And if you trace it historically, it’s just a man made thing. More on what this is and why it’s wrong here. Also here.
1611 KJV only-ism.  If you know even the basics of translation, this is a bad translation. It also begs the question – You believe that God can preserve his word through thousands of years on pieces of parchment, but you don’t believe that the integrity of his word is preserved through updating? You worship this translation of this book as much or more than you worship the Father? Furthermore they claim superiority of a supposed Byzantine text over texts supposedly from the Library of Alexandria because the people of Alexandria were all heretics and hedonists. This shows a gross ignorance of church history and…basic world history.  This is a great debate which not only teaches the basic of translation, but also shows the KJV only arguments so that you can easily see the holes for yourself in this vile doctrine. 

Purity Culture teaches women, just like “the world” that our value is in our sexuality. It teaches young men that women are enemies and vile temptations, and it teaches women that our sexuality and sexual desires (and our bodies) are dirty and wrong. I can think of fewer things that have damaged my generation more than this insane, controlling, man made, insane version of what Christ has called us to. If you’re someone who was raised in Purity Culture, I strongly urge you to listen to Rebecca Lemke, who’s done some amazing work unpacking all the baggage that comes with Purity Culture, and has written a book called The Scarlet Virgins: When Sex Replaces Salvation. Very much worth reading is this blog post on 3 Big Lies Modesty Culture Is Teaching Your Sons.

Legalism claimed to be “standards”. Now “Old Paths” and IFB give lip service to them not being legalistic, because they claim that salvation doesn’t come from following rules, but what they DO say, and quite frequently, is “If you don’t have standards I have to wonder if you’re really saved”. Bitch that’s legalism. I understand what you’re trying to say, but what you’re saying is stupid and illogical and you shouldn’t say it. Here’s an example of the modest standards women are told to hold to and are taught. It’s amazingly convoluted bullshit. However it’s absolutely how people in Independent Fundamental Baptist Churches decide your value as a woman, a person, and decide if you truly have a relationship with God.

It should be noted that men don’t hold to standards. They hold women to Mosaic law, but themselves are allowed to be gluttons and eat shrimp/bacon, and sit there, staring at a woman’s ass, declaring she’s shaming God in her jeans while they can barely button their ever present suits over their guts. Lovely. Jesus is super duper proud, guys, I just know it.

There’s more I could go on and on about – that Jesus never drank wine, it was grape juice! (a google search of greek words proves this is bullshit), the screaming from the pulpit. The fake degrees from friends. The advice to beat your children until they submit, when the “rod” the old testament speaks of was a shepherd’s rod, which they use to guide their sheep, not beat them into submission. The flat out hatred of gays, and jokes about killing them. The terrible, awful, no good, very bad music. The “altar calls/invitations” that go on and on and on until the pastor feels he’s seen good enough numbers to brag about how many were “saved”. How my family and my relationship with my parents suffered through the busy work they did and still do for the “church”. How my mom is constantly taken advantage of and never appreciated, even though she literally did more physical work for the church than the pastor’s wife did, for decades. It’s all shit, it’s all bread and circuses. I’m sure I’ll ramble on about it here at some point.

Now the last of it that I had clung to  is falling away, and I feel like most of my youth was wasted in a cult, being afraid, and hating myself. My years for a basic education was wasted by homeschoolers who taught very poor christian curriculum and no fine arts, actual history or literature classes, and everything I learned at church was just…ashes. Pointless nothing. Things I have to do work to unlearn. Destructive and evil habits I have to week out of my heart. And while absolutely my childhood was not as bad as many had it, and my parents tried their best while being controlled and lied to by an evil man who said he was a man of God, it’s really hard to get to 31 years old, and have to say “Yeah, I was physically, mentally and emotionally abused as a child. Gaslighting was a normal thing. And there’s nothing spiritually to show for it. My parents are still there, my dad still yells at me about the KJV.”

The few things that I was clinging to in order to justify my upbringing are crumbling under my feet, and I’m just here. Tired, empty,  and very very sad.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dreaming Update…

I went to a playdate yesterday at the church we’ve been going to but are not members of. Met some other cool moms. They were impressed with my garden. My garden that I’ve been lamenting to my husband and God all week about being discouraged about. I’ve been questioning my entire life – why garden? It’s not GREAT, everyone else’s is so much better! Why blog? My blog is tiny, no one reads it, and my writing is crap! Every one else’s blog is so much better!”

Funny how we see things, isn’t it? I watch all these youtubers and I think “YOUR GARDEN IS MAGICAL” and mine is…not dead yet? My “this doesn’t even count!” is someone else’s “Wow, you can do that? That’s so friggin cool!”.

Note to self: Don’t disparage the work God is doing in your life or your garden because it’s not done yet.

Also, making mom friends. So weird. Nice, but weird. Apparently I’m still ten years old and awkward in my head. As one other mom, who I found TOTALLY AWESOME and cannot for the life of me remember the name of, commented on. We’re all still awkward tweens inside.

I said update, so here’s an update. I present to you, our June 1st 2017 Harvest:

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Kathy Griffin Has A Right To Be Gross.

 

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

 

Yeah, she does. I don’t like the image of her holding a very realistic looking severed head of Donald Trump. I find it abhorrent, disgusting, and question her motives since it’s Ramadan. What message, exactly, is she trying to send?

The reality is that it doesn’t matter what message she’s trying to send. Or that it’s offensive. Or that Barron Trump didn’t realize at first that it wasn’t really his father’s severed head (good job MSM, an 11 year old thinks it’s possible for his father’s head to cut off and used in a photoshoot. We’re just running away from “civilized”, aren’t we?). It doesn’t even matter that it’s Ramadan, and Muslims/ISIS are currently actually beheading people overseas and blowing up children.

It doesn’t matter. She didn’t actually hurt anyone, she didn’t directly tell others to go commit violent acts. It’s her right to be a twatwaffle.

 


Your feelings about her art, her words, her expression of self, simply do not matter when it comes to the legality of the matter, and if she “can”. My feelings, your feelings, the feelings of college students everywhere, do not next to the right free speech. Freedom of thought and expression. It is absolute. It is important we understand this is a fundamental right. None of our other rights matter if this one isn’t upheld. When this topples, the rest follow. It’s why we have the Second Amendment in the United States. The Second protects The First.

You, by the way, have the same right to be a twatwaffle. Or jerk, or asshole. Independent Fundamental Baptist preachers have the right to spew vile lies, call people faggots, and generally warp the gospel of Christ into the gospel of bullies, college students without one foot in reality have the right to call white milk racist.

From sea to shining sea, we all have the right to be complete idiots and blowhards, if we so choose. ‘Merica.

EAGLEEEEEEissooveryourbs

With Great Freedom comes Great Responsibility. This is why people hate big government, by the way. The Bigger your Government, the smaller your freedom. There’s no perfect balance of the two.  People who want bigger government want less personal responsibility – like paying for their own, um, life. The cost of the government covering your basic life needs that you yourself should cover, is that you have less freedom. They spy on you, they tell you want you can and cannot do.

Big government is like living with your parents – as long as you live under my roof and eat my food, you’ll obey my rules. As someone who is thankful and proud to be an American, I say: Fuck that noise.

Freedom is not easy. It’s not for the faint of heart. It requires character and self policing, and dealing with the fallout of your own actions and words, because you are responsible for yourself. This is how we should raise our children. This is how we should live ourselves.

We are blessed here in the United States to have Freedom of Speech, and if we wish to keep it, to uphold this precious right for which blood has been shed, we have to defend “icky” speech like Kathy Griffin’s as much as we defend speech we agree with.

I will leave you with the words of the great Neil Gaiman, who puts it far more eloquently than I should ever hope to. I strongly suggest you go read the post in it’s entirety, as it’s well worth the time to not only read, but muse over as well.

“If you accept — and I do — that freedom of speech is important, then you are going to have to defend the indefensible. That means you are going to be defending the right of people to read, or to write, or to say, what you don’t say or like or want said.

The Law is a huge blunt weapon that does not and will not make distinctions between what you find acceptable and what you don’t. This is how the Law is made.

People making art find out where the limits of free expression are by going beyond them and getting into trouble.”

– Neil Gaiman