Choosing Love In A Divided Nation

Choosing Love In A Divided Nation

The election is over, but citizens of this country still have to vote: will it be love or hate?
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We are a nation divided and that is far more dangerous and powerful than Trump will ever be. Before he has even taken office, we are destroying our own country through hatred, miscommunication and terror. Please, please can we all just take a moment and breathe? Just breathe. No, we’re not going to all agree and be one cheery, happy family with no problems. There’s no simple, quick-and-easy fix for the racism, sexism, xenophobia and many other issues our nation already faces. The media has amplified the faults of both candidates through the entire election and now, it’s creating mass hysteria. Trump is not president yet. Our country, and the people in it, is still alive. Yes, our future is uncertain and shaky and not full of political comfort, but we’re not dead yet.

And as I Christian, I’m finding peace and hope and stability in the simple truth that there’s still God. He’s still here, even though it may look like he doesn’t care or doesn’t really even exist. He does, but so does sin. So does hate. Our country turned its back on him long ago and now we’re facing the consequences. Christianity has earned a reputation for being a religion of hypocritical bigots. That’s not what I stand for. I stand for love. I stand for grace. I stand for a God who knows me by name, a God who knows every detail of my life, a God who is intimately aware of my faults. I stand for a God who is far greater than me or the country I live in. I stand for a God who is ultimately in control, no matter who our president is. But that doesn’t mean he’s not going to let us live with the consequences of our actions; we do have free will, after all.

As I’ve been wrestling with the reactions to the election, I’ve found myself returning to the book of Isaiah. During a time of great fear and political oppression, God gave his promises to his people, reminding them of who he is. Isaiah 45:7 says, I form light and create darkness, I make well-being and create calamity, I am the Lord, who does all these things.” Israel was in turmoil, just like our nation today. They needed to be reminded of whom God was and that he had a very specific plan of hope and salvation—but it would not be easy.

Isaiah 46:8-10 says “Remember this and stand firm, recall it to mind, you transgressors, remember the former things of old; for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose.”

There is no other. Right now, I need to be reminded of that. In this time of fear and division, our country doesn’t need a political leader that’s going to make it great again. No man can do that. No government can do that. Our country is in desperate need of God. His counsel alone will stand and, no matter what the political leaders or citizens of this country believe or do, he will accomplish his purpose. I don’t need to be afraid of Trump or his hateful propaganda. Rather, my trust should be placed in a God who sees and knows all, a God that will accomplish his purpose, a God who forms both light and darkness. I also do not need to fear the hate and division I see even now in our nation. Right now, my social media feed is pretty much overrun with hurt and terror. There are people who want to remain divided because they are angry and frustrated and offended by those who supported a different candidate than them. People are terrified of the promises Trump has made and the consequences those promises will have. I get that.

But we can’t let fear and different opinions divide us. That’s letting hate win. By choosing division and hatred for those who voted differently than you, you’re letting our country continue to spiral down the path of terror it’s been on for a while now. No matter whom you voted for, we now have Trump. There’s no longer a choice to be made about that. But we still have a choice to choose love or hate. I know where my vote is going. My vote is going with God, with love, with faith in a creator infinitely greater than any politician or political system. Ephesians 6:12 says “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” My fight is not with Trump or Clinton or voters of either candidate. My fight is with the darkness and hatred and fear being spread by forces greater than we understand. Satan is real and so are his demons and this rapid division and terror is coming straight from him. We are currently a nation divided and fearful and desperately in need of God—an easy target. So I’m fighting back by choosing God, choosing love, choosing faith. I’ve found peace in all this turmoil because my hope is not in this messed up political system. It never has been and it never will be. My hope is in God, and with him, I’m moving forward in love and hope and peace in a time when those things are hard to find.

Cover Image Credit: http://i.huffpost.com

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I'm A Woman And You Can't Convince Me Breastfeeding In Public Is OK In 2019

Sorry, not sorry.

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Lately, I have seen so many people going off on social media about how people shouldn't be upset with mothers breastfeeding in public. You know what? I disagree.

There's a huge difference between being modest while breastfeeding and just being straight up careless, trashy and disrespectful to those around you. Why don't you try popping out a boob without a baby attached to it and see how long it takes for you to get arrested for public indecency? Strange how that works, right?

So many people talking about it bring up the point of how we shouldn't "sexualize" breastfeeding and seeing a woman's breasts while doing so. Actually, all of these people are missing the point. It's not sexual, it's just purely immodest and disrespectful.

If you see a girl in a shirt cut too low, you call her a slut. If you see a celebrity post a nude photo, you call them immodest and a terrible role model. What makes you think that pulling out a breast in the middle of public is different, regardless of what you're doing with it?

If I'm eating in a restaurant, I would be disgusted if the person at the table next to me had their bare feet out while they were eating. It's just not appropriate. Neither is pulling out your breast for the entire general public to see.

Nobody asked you to put a blanket over your kid's head to feed them. Nobody asked you to go feed them in a dirty bathroom. But you don't need to basically be topless to feed your kid. Growing up, I watched my mom feed my younger siblings in public. She never shied away from it, but the way she did it was always tasteful and never drew attention. She would cover herself up while doing it. She would make sure that nothing inappropriate could be seen. She was lowkey about it.

Mindblowing, right? Wait, you can actually breastfeed in public and not have to show everyone what you're doing? What a revolutionary idea!

There is nothing wrong with feeding your baby. It's something you need to do, it's a part of life. But there is definitely something wrong with thinking it's fine to expose yourself to the entire world while doing it. Nobody wants to see it. Nobody cares if you're feeding your kid. Nobody cares if you're trying to make some sort of weird "feminist" statement by showing them your boobs.

Cover up. Be modest. Be mindful. Be respectful. Don't want to see my boobs? Good, I don't want to see yours either. Hard to believe, I know.

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Trump Hasn't Nicknamed Pelosi or AOC. What's The Deal?

These two women aren't receiving the usual treatment and it begs the question: why?

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Our Commander in Chief has been known to give out derogatory nicknames to those in the capital that he doesn't like very much. EG: "Pocahontas" for Elizabeth Warren, "Crooked" Hillary. I mean, for goodness sake's, there's a Wikipedia article with a comprehensive list of Trump's mean nicknames and who they belong to.

While Wikipedia does include names used on Nancy Pelosi, all of the nicknames still include her own name, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez doesn't even make the list. While the internet has adoringly dubbed her AOC, Trump himself hasn't felt the urge to demean her with a nickname.

So, what gives? Why do Pelosi and AOC get spared the derogatory nickname?

(Also, remember that in no way is this normal.)

I may be making a giant assumption, but it seems to be, that Trump's nicknames are meant to demean and belittle the receivers of them. So, by giving both Bernie and Hillary nicknames during the course of the election, he associated them with those traits and demeaned them in the public eye.

Nancy Pelosi and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez aren't people that Trump can easily belittle. The reasons for why are varied and speculative, but it seems that Trump has found these to be more difficult to harass in front of the public. It could be because of mass public support for them, but Bernie Sanders and Hilary were both moderately popular in the eyes of the media and general citizenship.

In my mind, that narrows it down to two things. Either Trump does not view Pelosi or AOC as threats, or... he is afraid to nickname them.

It seems insane that Trump would not view the two as a threat, given their very public statements regarding his policies. Pelosi and Cortez are threats, but big enough ones that Trump is afraid of their retaliation in the political scheme, and therefore, it's too dangerous to give them nicknames.

But now we can see through him. If he can't demean these two strong women for his own political gain, what can he do?

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