A Life Is A Life

A Life Is A Life

What do we stand for anymore?
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As a country that is in the midst of a crisis it is safe to say that the pride we feel on the Fourth of July is not enough. There was a time, either our parents or our grandparents’ generation, that people were proud to call themselves an American, they were proud to be a part of the greatest country in the world. Yet this generation refuses to say The Pledge of Allegiance because they may not believe in God. We complain that too much money is being put into military spending, but we are scared to go to the movies, or school, or even a club. I think our generation needs a swift kick to the ego. When will we wake up and realize that hating or even bashing our country is doing nothing to change it? As Martin Luther King Jr. said “Hate cannot drive out Hate”.

Instead of getting offended by this country’s past, we must create its future. This is a very trying time for our generation with a rise in school shootings, racial tension and terrorism. This is our cross to bear and we must bear it as a generation, united to make America better. My heart goes out to everyone affected by the hate in this country, they do not deserve it but this is not the time to draw lines in the sand and dole out blame.

“One Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all” sounds familiar right? This is the last half of the Pledge of Allegiance and with the way the country looks, it should read “one Nation under God, divisible, with liberty and justice for some”. It is our patriotic duty to fight for freedom and equality. This means we have to stand up and fight for the people being killed or oppressed, be it, Muslims, African Americans, Hispanics, Whites, Gays or Straight. All lives have an equal worth and deserve equal respect so, this has to end! This violence does not bring pride back to our Nation, it only brings more hate and suffering.

Dallas, Texas has just experienced a horrific event. People were afraid and there was hate in the air, whether it was hate toward the police or the system. Many people lost their lives to this hate and that is incredibly disheartening. “Not all cops are bad people and not all African Americans are thugs” I’ve seen this saying a lot and from my experiences I think that it implies to a large majority of people from each group. The media does not show the kindness of the police and their love for people, nor does it respectfully show African Americans and this is a problem that needs a solution.

To take a side on issues like Black Lives Matter and Police Lives Matter only makes the situation worse, because they are both important and should be held in equal respect. In this fight for equality, we must all be seen as the same. Not differing in color, or faith, or sexual orientation, or occupation because after all, a life is a life.

Cover Image Credit: Wikipedia

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17 Empowering Bible Verses For Women

You go, girl.
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We all have those days where we let the negative thoughts that we're "not good enough," "not pretty enough" or "not smart enough" invade our minds. It's easy to lose hope in these situations and to feel like it would be easier to just give up. However, the Bible reminds us that these things that we tell ourselves are not true and it gives us the affirmations that we need. Let these verses give you the power and motivation that you're lacking.

1. Proverbs 31:25

"She is clothed with strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future."

2. Psalm 46:5

"God is within her, she will not fall."

3. Luke 1:45

"Blessed is she who believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her."

4. Proverbs 31:17

"She is energetic and strong, a hard worker."

5. Psalm 28:7

"The Lord is my strength and my shield."

6. Proverbs 11:16

"A gracious woman gains respect, but ruthless men gain only wealth."

7. Joshua 1:9

"Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."

8. Proverbs 31:30

"Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised."

9. 1 Corinthians 15:10

"By the grace of God, I am what I am."

10. Proverbs 31:26

"When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness."

11. Psalm 139:14

"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made."

12. 1 Peter 3:3-4

"Don't be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God."

13. Colossians 2:10

"And in Christ you have been brought to fullness."

14. 2 Timothy 1:7

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline."

15. Jeremiah 29:11

"'For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord. 'They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.'"

16. Exodus 14:14

"The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm."

17. Song of Songs 4:7

"You are altogether beautiful, my darling, beautiful in every way."

Next time you're feeling discouraged or weak, come back to these verses and use them to give you the strength and power that you need to conquer your battles.

Cover Image Credit: Julia Waterbury

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That One Time I May Have Shot An Ex-Police Officer

Yeah, you heard me.

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In England, we don't really have guns, maybe hunting guns but I think it's pretty rare. Anyway, point is, barely any guns. I have never seen a gun, shot a gun, I don't even know anybody that owns a gun so as an exchange student in Oklahoma it's a novelty to visit a gun range.

I was pretty nervous about shooting but the instructor was super nice and told us how to hold the gun and load it before we went into the range. He also let us ask any questions we had about guns and explained the process of getting a gun in Oklahoma and he said he had visited Europe and was talking about England, and how he used to be a cop and opened his own gun shop. Basically a really really nice guy, which honestly makes harming him ten times worse.

We went into the range and we were shooting a 22 caliber and another guy at the range, I'm assuming a regular, asked if we wanted to fire his revolver so of course, we said yes.

This gun was definitely heavier and the trigger was super hard to pull but he kept his hand on the gun whilst I struggled with the trigger and then I fired it.

I heard a bang and I heard a yell.

I turned around and he was holding his thumb and there was blood dripping onto the floor. At this point, I thought I had shot him, so you can imagine the sheer level of panic that I was feeling.

The color drained from my face and I was frozen solid and all I could say was, "are you okay?" which was answered with a "Ma'am, put the gun down."

Basically, I'm freaking out and I look over at the lads for some form of reassurance, which was met with them looking equally as freaked out as me. So I asked,

"Do we need to call someone?"

"Yep. We are definitely gonna have to call someone"

So at this point, my nerves were shattered and I had no idea what was going on or what the procedure is for this sort of thing. I mean, the guy also took it like a champ and barely even winced and kept repeating "little lady, you're fine" – safe to say I did not feel fine nor did the situation, in my eyes, look at all fine.

Luckily the regulars knew what to do and took him to the ER so we were left in the store with another regular shooter.

Everyone else went back out to shoot but I didn't feel like assaulting/ shooting/ potentially murdering anyone else so I decided to sit this round out and talk to the woman that stayed with us and he called and said it wasn't me, something came off the bullet or gun and went into his hand- so no I didn't actually shoot him and he was going to be okay.

The point of this now very funny story is that whilst guns are cool they're also pretty dangerous.

I have no idea how someone can participate in these mass shootings because I didn't even shoot someone, only thought I did, and it was probably the most terrifying moment of my life.

So, if you are around guns, have fun, be safe and try not to send your instructor to the ER.

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