Everything Doesn’t Happen For A Reason

It’s been a hot minute since I’ve felt an urge to write. And truth be told this began as a Facebook post that started to get a little wordy because as it turns out I had a lot weighing on my chest.

Can we stop saying everything happens for a reason?

I grew up going to church, I went to college for a ministry degree and was constantly hearing things like “everything happens for a reason”, “God won’t give you more than you can handle”, “God only gives his hardest battles to his strongest soldiers”, “you may not see it now, but there’s a reason you’re going through this.” I’m so sick of hearing it.

Stop it. It doesn’t. There isn’t a reason for everything. We don’t have to give justification to the crap in life. This world is just full of shitty (pardon my French) things and moments that can’t be explained or reasoned.

Reason out for me all the recent mass shootings of innocent people who had so much life left to live. Reason out for me children dying before they’re even given a chance at life. Reason out for me cancer. You can’t do it. There isn’t a reason. There’s not a reason for people’s suffering. You can’t justify why people have to go through pain. You can’t tell people they can’t feel angry or hurt or sad because whatever they’re going through has “a reason”. You can’t tell them God knew they could handle it so that’s why it’s happening.

Stop it. Stop making people feel like they have to be okay with what they’re going through because “it’s God’s will”.

That’s not to say you can’t learn through experiences and trials. I’m not saying you can’t use something bad as a foundation to help others or to change yourself. I can think of times someone took something awful and turned it around for good. But those are not reasons for the pain. That’s making lemons into lemonade. That’s making the best of a bad situation. That’s rising like a Phoenix from the ashes. That’s not everything happening for a reason.

Stop it. God doesn’t “give” people bad things to make them stronger and everything doesn’t happen for a reason. Just stop.

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Noah’s Ark: The Best Darn Children’s Story Ever

Gather round children. Today I’m going to tell you the story of how God got really angry at all the people on the earth and killed all of them!

One day God looked down at the earth and saw everyone being really, really bad. This did not please him. No one was obeying him and they were all being just downright disobedient. Except one guy. We’ll call him Noah. Noah was ‘counted righteous’ by God.

God went to Noah and said, “Hey Noah. How’s it going?”

“Hey God. It’s going alright. Just living the dream here.”

“Awesome. I don’t know if you noticed this but all the people on this earth are terrible. They are living in sin and debauchery and are not doing anything good at all so you know what I’m going to do?”

“Um. No?”

“I’m going to kill all of them. I’m going to make it rain for 40 days and 40 nights. It’s going to rain A LOT. So much rain that the entire earth floods! The whole thing. There will be no dry ground anywhere and everyone is going to die because they will all drown.”

“Wow! That’s…wow. Why are you telling me this?”

“Don’t worry Noah I like you. So I have a special plan for you. I want you to build a really, really large boat. And on this boat I’d like you to put two of every animal in existence.”

“Um…ok?”

“You and your family can also get on the boat. And then you will be saved. You, your family, all the giraffes, zebras, ocelots and all the other animals…but not the dodo birds or the dinosaurs. They weigh too much for the boat.”

“Ya. Okay. I guess I’ll do that. Mainly because you’re God. And I’m pretty sure I shouldn’t tell you no. In fact, nope I would never do that because you might drown me.”


“Okay. Sounds good. Thanks Noah. I’ll let you know when the flood is coming so you can get in your giant boat! Good luck!”

And so Noah received the distinct honor of getting to build a really big boat! After days of toil and hard work and many thumbs smashed by hammers, the boat was finished. Then Noah and his family gathered all the animals, 2 of each kind, and put them all on the boat. Then the rain began. It rained and rained and rained.

All the evil people thought Noah was crazy because of his giant boat.
Hey Noah! Cool boat….weirdo!”

“Oh ya? Well I’m not going to die like you because I’m in a boat.”


“Whatever. I’m just going to go up on this mountain and I’ll be safe. So see you later.”


“That’s what you think, evil human.”

And so Noah, his family, and many, many animals closed the doors of their boat and floated off on their way, leaving all the evil people with no boat. The rains kept coming down until finally there was no ground left to stand on. So much water even the mountains were covered.

Noah and his family were safe in their boat until all the waters went down so they could get out of the boat. All the other people of the earth weren’t so lucky. Because they were evil and stupid and didn’t get on Noah’s boat, they died a painful death by drowning.

The End.

And that my children is why we decorate your rooms with Noah’s ark, to help you remember when God destroyed all the people on the earth! Remember, don’t be evil, or you’ll drown!! Have a nice day! See you next time!

A Little Bit of Seriousness on a Friday Evening

It’s not often that I have something of substance to share with the world. Mostly I have nonsensical things to share. I like jokes as much as the next person but occasionally things hit me the wrong way, or eat at me for a while and I eventually have to get them off my chest. This is one of those nights. So if you’re looking for a light happy read, I’m probably not going to provide it right now. I apologize in advance.

As long as I’ve had the capability to breathe on my own I have been a member of the Church. In fact, for a major portion of my childhood, my mother was my children’s pastor, so I’ve seen my fair share of church people, church issues and the inner workings of the church. Growing up I had a great perception of the term Christian. Everyone I associated myself with was a Christian. I accepted Christ myself at the age of 12 and went on to pursue my calling into Children’s ministry after high school.

It wasn’t until college that I began to see that I had been very blessed in my interactions with other Christians within the church. Through people I worked with and, even people I attended class with, I became aware that the term Christian can very easily have a negative connotation to it. I didn’t really get how this happened because of how I had grown up, and the people I had grown up around. Everyone I knew that was a Christian, or was associated with the church in any way, lived their life following Christ and living for him, so I, in no way, have ever seen the term Christian as negative.

Within the last year however, I have seen how this can easily happen. I graduated in May with a ministry degree and I began sending out my resume to different churches. I had several interviews with different churches and many different pastors. Most were very positive experiences and while I didn’t get any of those jobs I walked away from each one learning something in the process and knowing there was something else out there. However there were a few interactions that left me with a little bit of a sour taste. Situations in which I was contacted first, or was asked to send my resume. I would put a lot of effort, more than I probably should have, into getting back to these people immediately. I would email them back as soon as possible, call them whatever it was I needed to do, asking if they needed anything else from me. And then nothing. No calls back, no emails, no ‘thanks for your resume’. Nothing. I would get bummed trying to figure out how I possibly offended someone or made myself look unqualified just through sending a resume. I don’t feel like my resume makes me look like a bonehead. Maybe it does, but I don’t think so.

These experiences have not made me angry at Christian’s or the church in any way, don’t get me wrong. I still have a high opinion of people who are doing Christ’s work in the church setting, but these experiences did make me see how someone who wasn’t from church background could feel put off and ignored a little. Luckily, I know enough trustworthy, loving people in the Church and I’m strong enough in my faith that I’ve learned to brush off these negative experiences and focus on the positive ones with real Christlike people. But it’s not hard for me to see how someone who didn’t grow up in the church, and was a pastor’s kid, could be turned off by things such as this.

When you think of a leader of a church you think of someone who is willing to go out of their way to help people. Someone who is honest, even when it’s hard. You know, someone who acts like Christ. At least that’s what I’d like to think the people who are leading our churches are like. It sucks that there are people out there who are making Christians look like people filled with hate and anger towards others. There are people like Fred Phelps who do some of the most hateful things I can think of and they do it in the name of Christ. That’s not a Christian to me. There are also people who choose not to respond to any type of communication from a 22-year-old college grad rather than even attempt to hear her out. I would be lying if I said I didn’t lose a little respect for some of those people through those few experiences. I would greatly respect someone who came to me and said, “We’ve decided to go in a different direction.” or “You don’t quite have the experience we’re looking for” rather than a response that sounds similar to crickets. That’s not Christian to me either.

To me a Christian is someone who does their best in everything they do. They might not be the best, they might even be the worst but they’re doing their best. And the reason they’re doing their best is because they’re doing it for Christ. They’re living their life not focused on how they appear to the world or whether they have the newest gadgets and gizmos. They’re entire life is focused on whether or not they’re reflecting an attitude of Christ in their daily walk. The attitude of love, kindness, and all the other fruits of the spirit. It’s a life lived for something so much bigger than this world. All too often this isn’t the case in our world. And that’s what sucks. I guess I just wish I could apologize to all the people with negative perceptions of Christians. We’re not all that way, in fact most of us aren’t that way. I’d like to think that everyone who says they’re a Christian is reflecting a true Christ-like attitude, but I’m not naive. I know they’re not.

I just hope that I’m never that person bringing a negative view to Christians. I hope I never reach point where I’m so focused on myself that I can act hatefully to someone and be okay with it. I hope AND pray that I conduct myself in such a way that I reflect Christ. I hope people see me as living my life for something bigger than myself, something bigger than just this world. I hope that I’m seen as someone who is showing Christ’s love through my actions and words. And I also hope that if I’m not, someone calls me out really fast.

That’s it guys. I’m not even sure if anyone will read all of that and I’m not even sure it makes sense if anyone does but that’s what was on my heart. Thanks for listening to my diarrhea of the mouth if you did read all of that rambling. Much appreciated here. Don’t worry though. I only have serious thoughts every couple of months. I’ll probably go back to poop jokes and such tomorrow.

Why I Love Tim Tebow

I will be the first person to admit that I am a member of Tebow-mania. I love the guy. Big fan. In fact the weekend before Christmas I made it my personal mission to find his book. This is perhaps the stupidest decision I have ever made. The thing was sold out absolutely everywhere. Lifeway, Target (x2), Walmart (x2), Barnes and Noble…EVERYWHERE! I could not find this book. Everywhere I went I found Colt McCoy’s book and Tony Dungy’s book, but no Tebow. Why, I asked myself, is Tim Tebow so popular? It must be because he’s the first openly Christian football player! Oh wait…no, no, that’s not it because Colt is a Christian also. It must be because he’s a phenomenal quarterback? Eh…probably not.

So why are people so obsessed with Tim Tebow? (besides, of course, his rugged good looks and southern charm) He’s not the first athlete to pray on the sidelines or know Bible verses.

I feel nothing but sympathy for the guy. He doesn’t do anything out of the ordinary to garner all this attention. He’s just trying to live his life and play his game to the best of his ability. Oh ya, and he loves Jesus while he does it. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with this. He doesn’t shove his relationship with Christ down anyone’s throat, he’s not obnoxious about it. He’s just loving Jesus and playing football.

The problem comes when his super insane fans claim that God is winning these football games for Tim. I tend to think that God has bigger things to worry about than whether the Broncos make it to the Super Bowl. I think if we asked Tim Tebow this, he would concur. Not once has this man said God won the game for him. He would tell you that God blessed him with the skills and the ability to play football and in that sense, ya I guess God does help. But then why does Troy Polamalu lose? He’s also a Christian. He prays before games too. Is he not as strong a Christian as Tebow? I don’t think that’s it at all.

Unfortunately Tim Tebow has become a victim of, what I like to refer to as ‘ministry major over spiritualization syndrome’ I attended a private Christian college and received a bachelors degree in children’s ministry, so I have had my fair share of religion classes with other religion students. ‘Ministry major over spiritualization syndrome’ runs rampant in these classes. Basically it’s giving God credit for absolutely everything that goes on. Now don’t get me wrong. I know God is with us at absolutely every point in our day, but he gave us free will and with that free will God allows us to handle some stuff on our own. Things like ‘God let all the stoplights be green so i could get to Starbucks before my 8:00 class’ or ‘I accidentally overslept but my class was canceled so I wasn’t counted absent‘ are things that I don’t think God had too much of a hand in. I’m not going to say that God doesn’t work in this world. He does. All the time. But I’m a firm believer that God gives us opportunities in life and it’s up to us to decide if we’re going to use them for his glory or for our own worldly recognition and pleasure. I don’t think God is up in the sky using me as a puppet to do his will. I think he hopes I use my opportunities and do all I can to bring him glory even in mundane tasks. I think he’s got the same plan for Tim Tebow. He’s not giving him magical powers to win a football game. He’s blessed him with the skills to get as far as he has and has given him an incredible platform to share his faith story.

That’s why I’m a Tebow fan. Not because I think he’s the ‘chosen one’ but because I look at him and I see the real deal. I see a guy who’s in love with Jesus and doesn’t care if people know. He’s living his walk just like the rest of us. He has, however, been given a much bigger stage than the average Christ follower like myself. All eyes, Christian and non, are on him. And he’s doing an incredible job standing firm in his beliefs, if i do say so myself. How he stays humble and grounded through all this popularity, be it positive or not, is a sign of his faith and his strong reliance on God in his life. He’s using what God has given him and giving it right back by being an example of a true Christian life. And THAT is why I’m a Tim Tebow fan.

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If the Broncos lose to New England on Saturday he’s still going to be Tim Tebow the Christian football player.

God will still love him. And so will I.

“God is in this Old Chicago tonight”

I may have had the strangest experience ever with my coworkers this evening. I truly mean strange. Here’s how it went down.

Conversation begins lightly. Talk about children and how some are obnoxious and sometimes they bite me. (see we work at a daycare so this is not weird although it seems super weird.)

Then we talk about pizza.  I like pepperoni some people like cheese.  Apparently people who like cheese only cannot just take the pepperoni off.  I don’t understand.  Nonetheless we came to the conclusion to get a pepperoni and a cheese.

The topic moves from pizza to, let’s call it ‘intercourse’ for the sake of being classy.  Then somehow the conversation takes a drastic turn and goes here….

‘Do you believe in spirits?’ WHAT? Sex spirits? Alcoholic spirits? Where did this come from? From this discussion of otherworldly beings comes God. Which is what I do on a daily basis in my classes, talk about God.

I didn’t want to be ‘that’ person. You know  the “in my studies at my liberal arts university for my bachelor 0f arts in Christian ministry” person. So I remained a passive observer.

I became aware of what terrible connotations Christian has with it.  And how no one wants to be called a ‘Christian’ because of it.  They talked about saying they’re a follower or a believer before saying they’re a Christian.  How did we get to this point where we avoid even being associated with the word Christian as believers in Christ? Something is wrong here. And this bothers me.

That’s all I really have to say tonight. Pizza brings out serious topics with daycare workers I guess.

Pies and Reformation Day

I’m so glad that 493 years ago Martin Luther wrote his 95 Theses so that I could  feel free to eat candy on this day with no guilt. Because of Martin Luther children can dress as whatever creature/human/monster that they wish. Then they can parade door to door and receive delicious treats in which their parents must check to make sure they’re not poisoned oh thank you Martin Luther for the freedom to eat candy all day on October 31. (I hope the sarcasm seeping through this paragraph was felt thoroughly)

But for real 493 years ago Martin Luther made Protestantism a part of the Christian Church and stood up for his beliefs no matter what would happen to him. So that’s pretty awesome. As is this quote:

“I cannot and will not recant anything, for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe. Here I stand, I can do no other, so help me God. Amen. ”

 – Martin Luther

In case you couldn’t tell I really just hate Halloween. I don’t get the purpose other than it does give me an excuse to eat candy. But seriously if anyone could give me an answer as to why we wear costumes that would be great. Oh, sidebar, why are all female costumes hooker versions of everything? For example hooker firefighter, hooker cavewomen, hooker police woman? What is this business? Anyway I digress. Halloween is not my favorite holiday and I feel I’ve made that known.

On another note I beat my mother in a pie making contest. Perhaps that makes me as awesome as a 90-year-old woman. Do I care? No. I do not. Here is a picture:

Incredible no? I actually don’t know. I didn’t taste it. But it looks fancy, that’s all I was going for, surface level beauty. Man I’m great at pie!

In conclusion let’s all celebrate this Halloween by watching Luther and eating pie! Oh and lots and lots of candy.

Blogging?

It’s 1 a.m. I drank caffeine after 9:00. That is a no-no in my world.

This caffeine induced insomnia has caused me to join this whole world of ‘blogging’. I’ll be honest, I’m not very eloquent. I say what needs to be said in the shortest number of words I can.  So as for how awesome this blogging experience will be, I cannot say.

Nonetheless I will give this a shot. So…

As I sit here at now, 1:18 a.m. hearing nothing but the creaking of a house I can’t help but think how simple life could be and how much more difficult we make it. Why do we worry so much about little things? So often during the day I find myself frustrated/irritated/annoyed + any other synonyms.  And about what? Because I had to stop at a red light? Because someone left trash on the floor at work? There’s a stain on my shirt? At the end of the day none of this matters.  At the end of this life none. of. this. matters. So why do I get flustered? Because I’m human. Because I don’t rely on the one thing that can keep me sane and grounded.

25 “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? 27 Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?

Matthew 6:25-27

While I know I can’t stop myself from human fault and emotions and I’ll still want to plan ahead where I’m going to be tomorrow or even 10 years from now It’s comforting to know that God‘s got it.  There’s no reason to worry or become frustrated by the little things of this life.  God made us for a purpose, he made us to be in fellowship and relationship with him. He wants to provide for us he want’s us to lean on him and love him and walk with him in our lives. What good does it do me to spend 5 miserable minutes complaining about what someone else did or what ‘terrible’ thing happened to me? I could be using those moments to spend with our creator who cares so deeply for me that he reaches for me and calls out to me.  All he asks in return is relationship, love, friendship with him. Blows. My. Mind.  I don’t get it, it doesn’t make sense, it’s not logical….but…it’s truth. I’m learning to accept this in my life. I’m learning to take my logic out of my faith because that’s what faith is, it’s not logical, it’s faith, plain simple belief is something I can’t see.  Where’s the logic in that? It cannot be found and that’s the beauty and mystery of our creator. He’s a radical lover who calls to us and longs to be near even when we’re as far away as we can get.  Think about it.

That’s the kind of thoughts I have in the wee hours of the morning/late hours of the night. caffeine makes me think.