I Am So… (Fill in the Blank)

We women have a tendency to look very closely at ourselves and always come up short.

My hair is too curly.

My hair is too straight.

My thighs are too fat.

My boobs are too small.

My house isn’t clean enough.

I spend too much time cleaning.

I’m too disorganized.

I procrastinate too much.

And on, and on, and on…

Today’s Psalm shines a spotlight on how our Heavenly Father would like us to think of ourselves.

“You formed my inmost being;

You knit me in my mother’s womb.

I praise you, so wonderfully you made me;

Wonderful are your works!” Psa 139:13-14

I’ve heard women say, “We talk so badly about ourselves.  How would you feel if you heard your daughter talking about herself in that way?”

There’s so much truth in those words.  So, how must our Father feel – He who made us, knit us in our mothers’ wombs – when He hears His daughters tearing themselves apart?

How about, next time you want to criticize yourself, you instead say,

“My [blank] seems too [blank] but God made me and I know that I am beautiful in His eyes!”

Of course, there are some things that we can change, and that we should change.  Changes that would make us more Christ-like, and better servants of God.  After all, today’s reading in Isaiah reminds us, “It is too little, he says, for you to be my servant…”  (49:6)  Of course, this is a foretelling of Christ’s mission to the Gentiles, but it is also a message to today’s reader – that we must always continue to change, grow, become better, and do more in our service as Christians.

Thus, for those things that are changeable and change-worthy, how about next time you catch yourself giving way to criticism of yourself, you add a little prayer at the end:

“I am so disorganized.”

(that’s where you’d normally stop, or where you’d give yourself several examples of your inadequacies.  Now here’s the part to add:)

“God, I know that you formed my inmost being; you knit me in my mother’s womb.

I praise you, so wonderfully you made me; wonderful are your works!

Lord, I believe that my disorganization [or other inadequacy]

prevents me from being all that you made me to be.

Please help me become more organized [you get the picture]

so that I may serve you better.”

Boy Scouts: What Would Jesus Do?

Following a heated discussion of the Girls Scouts’ latest bed-fellows, the Boy Scouts briefly became the focus of conversation at book club tonight.

I’m going to say something that – I think – will be largely unpopular.

I totally agree with the change the Boy Scouts have made.

As the parent of a Boy Scout, I was encouraged to respond to the survey they issued in order to help them decide where to draw the line on the involvement of homosexuals in scouting.  As I read and prayerfully answered those questions, I realized what a difficult position the organization was in.  And it comes down to this:

What would Jesus do?

Would Jesus put people in leadership who openly professed beliefs and lifestyles that were contrary to his teachings?

No.  He clearly chose as his disciples men who would lead by example.  Men who would thwart conventions of the day to follow the convictions of their God.  Thus, I am very supportive of the Boy Scouts decision to continue to prevent openly gay adults from holding leadership roles.

Would Jesus tell a nine year old boy who openly professed homosexuality that he could not be a part of a group?

No.  In fact, he would encourage that boy to surround himself with good, Godly people, who could support and strengthen him in leading a life of sacrifice – a life in which he will be forced to deny his fleshly desires in recognition of God’s will for his life.

As a friend once told me: “I think, if Jesus were walking the Earth today, you’d be more likely to find him in a gay bar than at a Bible study.”  Jesus would go where he is most needed.  The well do not need a physician, after all.

And thus, as unpopular as my opinion may be, I do believe that young, homosexual boys should not be turned away from the Boy Scouts.  Or from youth group, or a group of friends at school, etc.  That smacks of bullying to me.  Quite frankly, it also smacks of cruelty, heartlessness, and any other number of not-so-nice things.

If you don’t like it, don’t put your son in Boy Scouts.  There are other options out there – options which, quite frankly, I myself am going to explore simply because I feel that Boy Scouts is too light on the faith and character aspect.

But I don’t think that having a gay boy in your son’s pack is going to turn your son gay.  It might raise some uncomfortable questions, but I think those questions will provide parents with valuable teaching moments.

And let’s face it. What are the chances, really, of a ten year old boy being openly gay and wanting to join Boy Scouts.  Pretty slim, I think.