Painting Grace Graffiti or How I Almost Quit Blogging

A Little Piece of 80s
Photo by Twig_Is_The_Future

“Paint grace-graffiti on the fences;
take in your frightened children who
Are running from the neighborhood bullies
straight to you.” Psalm 17 (The Message)

Recently, I questioned my place here in the Blogosphere. This test, is seems, is common to bloggers who remain. It is our Wilderness of sorts. Jesus went into the desert for 40 days and 40 nights to be tempted of the Devil. His temptations were, at the core, focused on keeping Him from doing what He was called to do.

And so it is the same with us. Our enemies, whether real, or in our own mind, are sent to keep us from doing what we were meant to do…and part of this test must be done alone. But I’m not writing about that part today. I’m writing about the part when strong hands pick me up when I am weak. I’m writing about community.

You see, as I went through my blogging valley, I received encouragement from the unexpected. I expected encouragement from my readers,…and I did get some. But the encouragement that blew my mind was from my blogging mentors. This wouldn’t be so surprising had they known that I considered them my mentors. However, I had admired them from afar, both in proximity and in anonymity. Sure, I left glowing comments on their blogs, but I never asked them for advice or let them know that I was watching their every move in order to copy their behavior in hopes that maybe, just maybe, I’d experience some of their success.

Within moments of posting my blogging woes, I received this comment from Jen:
I saw this on FB and came by to read and was I so surprised to see my name here. And then, my heart broke a little when I read the next few lines. And I know that you know, but I’m just confirming that the world would be a little less caring, a little less bright, and a whole lot less beautiful without YOUR words in it. You are a true original and I am so glad I know you.

This was so humbling and healing. Jen is possibly the kindest blogger I know. She was the first to invite me to join her blogging community, teaching me how to linkup with her weekly community Soli Deo Gloria. (Yes, I was that green at the moment.)

Then there was the Twitter mission started by Renee at Lessons from Twits and Teachers…she and the iconic Ironic Mom Leanne Shirtliffe decided that they were going to beat up the voice in my head that was telling me to quit.

A few days later, I read this Scripture in Psalm 17 from the Message Bible,

“Paint grace-graffiti on the fences;
take in your frightened children who
Are running from the neighborhood bullies
straight to you.”

It was then that I realized that this is just what my friends and mentors had done. They had painted grace-graffiti on my fences, telling my bullies to “KEEP OUT!”

Epiphany! What if I am ever ready to build a fence around those who need protection, even if it’s from themselves? And what if I, with pen or keyboard in hand, determine to ward off those bullies with grace-graffiti? What better place to write grace-graffiti than a real-life virtual wall on Facebook, or as a Tweet? Can I challenge you as well? Find someone who is needing a grace word, and paint some grace-graffiti on their fence. It might be just what they need to continue on!

Jen and Michelle thank you for your kind and encouraging words….and Renee and Leanne? Wow! You really went the extra mile. Keep painting that graffiti! Come to think of it, after Jesus finished with his temptation, two angels were sent to Him in order to minister to His needs…that’s who the two of you were, my angels. Thank you.

What grace-graffiti has been written on your fence lately?

Giving Thanks today with Ann:
and with Laura: and with Michelle:

56. for a husband who shampoos my carpets.
57. for the pattern the stark dormant trees make on the powder blue sky
58. for sunny skies despite cloudy news.
59. for the smell of banana bread in the house even if it’s not for me.
60. that I have enough groceries in the house that I can put off shopping. one. more. day.

and a brand new community at: GettingDownWithJesus

Donna Reed, Facebook and Sex Talk

It wasn’t all that long ago that Donna Reed was wearing pearls and pumps while cutting primroses from the garden.  I understand that there have been many changes since that day.  Many of them are good, some of them  are bad, but the world is a very different place than that of “Leave It To Beaver.”  Unfortunately, one of the good things left behind in this metamorphosis of time, is innocence. At one time, children (and adults for that matter) had the good fortune of being oblivious to many things with which they seem to be bombarded with now.  In those days, if you wanted to find pornography or an article regarding sex outside of marriage, you had to look pretty hard.  Now, all you have to do is push a button.  All too often, the innocence of a child is destroyed by a little internet curiosity.

And the effects of these changes aren’t limited to children, as my fellow blogger and author Ann Jackson knows; she recently wrote in her blog about how she was featured in the Australian version of Cosmopolitan Magazine about an internet pornography addiction.  Last time I checked, Cosmo is not a Christian publication. This is bigger than a religious problem.  This is a moral and a wisdom problem.  We have made this type of material too accessible for our own good, and many people have life lasting scars to prove it.

What does this have to do with BlogHer?  Last week, while attending a conference, I quickly checked my Facebook account. As I did, I found that BlogHer was featuring an article from their “Love and Sex” category. The article was about how to decide whether or not a person should engage in a “threesome”.

I have no opinion regarding BlogHer having a portion of their website devoted to this type of article. BlogHer doesn’t profess to have any religious affiliation, therefore, I can not expect for them to share my Christian viewpoint. As some of my dear readers pointed out, morality can not be legislated.  I can not expect the world to have my convictions.  What I do take issue with, is their decision to advertise these type of articles on Facebook.  Facebook should be a place where organizations of reputation are responsible enough to keep things at PG level.   Children and adults alike should not have to be bombarded by articles regarding sexual preference while checking a social networking site.

Another one of my blogging friends, Lady Tam from The Lady Expounds wrote this blog in response to my original post.  In it, she makes some very valid arguments.  However, I want to make it clear that I am not trying to keep BlogHer from publishing this type of article, but rather from advertising it on Facebook.

When I commented on their choice of articles featured on Facebook, this was the response:”we publish blog posts that are of interest to a wide variety of women and the number of posts about sex (of any kind) is small compared to the huge numbers of posts on other subjects.”

BlogHer is an excellent tool for us as bloggers.  As stated above, they want to appeal to every type of blogger.  This is fine.  Regardless of the comments posted on this particular Facebook thread, I still believe that the average American agrees that  this type of blog post should not be advertised to the masses, and made easily available through Facebook. As they stated themselves, the number of posts regarding this type of behavior is small.  So, why advertise them to the masses?  I’d venture to say many people are offended by having something of this type show up on their newsfeed.  It seems like poor business practice to push this type of article.

Please feel free to contact BlogHer and let them know how you feel about them using Facebook to advertise this type of article.

What do you believe about legislation of morality?  Is there a morality apart from Christianity?  Who or what determines it?

Next week:  Why People Over Forty Are In Shock.  (I’ll be answering some more of Lady Tam’s questions)


Short-Lived Vacation or Why I’m Boycotting BlogHer

I wasn’t going to post…I really wasn’t, but then it happened.  While checking my Facebook account, I noticed that BlogHer chose a very tasteless article to feature.  This isn’t the first time either.  But this time I decided to let them know how I felt about it and that I would be unliking and unfollowing them.

It’s one thing for them to have a love and sex category on their website, but it’s an entirely different thing for them to feature an article about “threesomes” on Facebook.

For one thing, many of my friends have had articles featured on BlogHer and I have been a part of this community as well.  By featuring this type of article, BlogHer is misrepresenting a huge portion of their writers.  It’s like having an article featured in Playboy.  I’m sorry, but people don’t buy Playboy’s for the articles…A huge blogging audience belongs to the Christian, stay at home mother/female, and I venture to say that these ladies will be highly offended.  BlogHer has put them in a position where they will have to reconsider their association with them.

What is even worse is that according to the comments that continued to be made on the thread where I voiced my opinion, the majority of people were okay with the article, and are okay with the ideas that it promotes, and okay with the promotion of said article on Facebook.  I am saddened.  What has happened to us, America?  Judeo-Christian and basic moral principles are quickly fleeting, and I guarantee that other freedoms and blessings will flee with them.  Grandma is definitely turning over in her grave.

I’m done with my soapbox.  One last thing…I want to stand up for righteousness and holiness!!!  I don’t want to let things like this go by!!!  If you are of the same persuasion, will you join me?  I recently read a great article by fellow blogger, Sally Clarkson.  It’s called, This is the Time to Be Holy.  I agree.