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Friday, September 4, 2015

Because I Hate Bad News.



Me: (via text) Hey Mom. What are you up to today?
Silence
Me: (via text) Are you doing anything tonight?
Silence
Me: (via text) Any chance you would be able to watch the kids tonight?
Nothing.

Finally I hurdle through *what feels like an impossible* challenge of using my actual words for an actual phone call to possibly hear an actual real time rejection of my request. It's so much easier to ask a favor via text because then if I am turned down, I can sulk quietly in the privacy of my home. On that same note, it's easier for the favor to be asked of someone via text because they can ignore the request and pretend they didn't see it. I'm not saying that's what my mom does, I'm saying we all do it. Because we hate bad news. And in some cases, being stuck babysitting on a Friday night is bad news.

Am I the only one who avoids looking at my bank statement because I'm scared of what it might say? Or avoids going to the doctor because what if it's serious? I do it like I'm watching a scary  movie with my hands covering my eyes and I peek through the space in my fingers. I have pillows on either side of my ears to drown out the intensity of the music. I want to know what happens, but I dont really want to see what leads up to it.

I was talking to my mom on the phone one morning earlier this week and I asked her about the possibility of  'unpleasant news' and she said to me, "I haven't thought about it yet. I want to get into the presence of God first and pray and read my Bible. Otherwise it will ruin my day." {On a side note: Can I just say I love my mom for that? She's sets such an incredible example of looking unto Jesus first, and not circumstances.}

As I was mulling over these thoughts yesterday, I forced myself to go over in my head all the *bad news* and things that I had thought about these past few weeks.
*Wow, I can't believe she died. Where has she been all these years anyways?
*Guys are such jerks. What on earth is wrong with people?
*Who on earth is that disgusting? Perverts.
*What do we do if ISIS was here? And I hear it is. Seriously, what do we do?
*Another mass shooting? Do I ever want to go to a movie again?
*Her Instagram feed looks so cool. What's the point? I'm not that creative. I can't compete with that.
*I wish I was cute and skinny again and had money for clothes like that. Those days are gone forever.
*Ugh. This country is getting more and more corrupt and immoral. I can't even handle it anymore.
*Do they ever see their kids? Is she ever happy or in a good mood? Can they ever not share gossip stories on facebook?

The list goes on.

So many thoughts that hit my mind regularly are negative and derived from something I was looking at online, either in the *facebook trending* news or on social media of some form. You guys, I'm not sure how I feel about  the shock of celebrity gossip or watching our society recklessly abandon biblical principals on the regular or shuttering over heart wrenching death being at the forefront of my day. I was always one to sort of avoid 'the news' because I didn't want to feed on anything that was going to cause me additional fear or pain. Maybe that's just me.

I often have this inner battle with my online status and whether or not I should step away from social media or the internet occasionally because of the way it affects me.  I think alot of us do. It almost seems silly, but the internet riles us up, ya know? It can boil our blood, put us in tears, cause us to roll our eyes, confuse us, sadden us, frighten us and deter our faith if we let it. And it's real. I hate to say it, but it's not just silly social media anymore. It's real life.
You know why? Because it really affects our hearts.



Above all else, guard your heart, because everything you do flows from it.
Proverbs 4:23

This verse has been rolling around on the inside of me this past 24 hours. Guard your heart. You guys, protecting yourself from 'bad news' or whatever it is that trips you up, isn't silly. It's actually biblical. You are the one who is responsible for your life and what flows from it. You have a responsibility to your people. Your kids. Your husband. Your community. Is life flowing from you to them? Is joy and peace flowing from you to them? Or is frustration, fear, irritability, confusion, doubt? Whatever it is, it's coming from somewhere.

What you are filling your heart with is what will come out. And if you aren't filling it with life, then life isn't what is coming out. You know the saying- Garbage In, Garbage out...

This post has nothing really to do with facebook or instagram or the internet within itself. In fact there is so much good online. So much that has inspired me and given me hope. But this has to do with what is affecting your heart for the worse. We might blow it off like it's not a big deal or tease people because they take it so seriously and abandon their social media, But in our culture, social media is *a thing* for a lot of people. Internet temptation is real. Fear is real. It just is.
Online life *is* real life for the majority of our society.
And if that is what is affecting you daily, then it's up to you to protect yourself. It it's something else, then guard yourself from that. Don't feel silly about it. Take your heart seriously.
You are responsible for the life (or death) that is flowing from you to your people, to your dreams, to your vision, to your purpose. I don't know about you, but I want life flowing into my vision. I want life flowing to the people I love and serve.

I'm not saying never go to the doctor because you don't want to hear bad news, or don't take cover when a tornado siren is going off. Obviously, we should use wisdom and we know there are tests and troubles in this world. We go through them with Jesus by our side. And we overcome.

But don't go looking for unnecessary ways to crush your spirit and spew death into the inner most parts of you, because you are responsible to give life and you can't give life you have none in you to give. 

Semi Side Note: Of course I know the word of God says to "cast down all thoughts and imaginations that exalt themselves against the knowledge of God" and I do when they come, Thank God for His truth.  But what if we didn't feed on or help plant those thoughts to begin with?

Bad news isn't entirely unavoidable. But feeding on it is. Where is your bad news coming from?


















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