//2018//

January. 2018.

WHAT IN THE WORLD. HOW DID WE GET HERE?!

I’m currently sitting in my favorite bookstore in Oklahoma City, thinking about the new year. I’m so thankful for a new year. I’m thankful for new beginnings and the excitement that is attached to that. I also feel as though this new year in particular is already being set apart. I can’t tell you why, but there is something different about it. And while I usually am very skeptical about the feeling of different attached to things, I’m not. For once, I feel like a true optimist.

I’m also thinking back over 2017. It was January of 2017 where I sat back and just listened to God and what he was saying over the year. As I sit at this little cafe, I am typing and glancing over at the tattered piece of computer paper that I wrote out my verses for 2017 on. I had 12 verses so highlighted for the year and didn’t really see the correlation then, but now I see it. Verse from the Psalms, Proverbs, Philippians, Colossians and a few others all talking about very big things that I had the opportunity to grow through. As I read over these now, I could cry. Each verse was strategic. Each verse called out the very things I was weak in and spoke life to those weak places. This paper hung in my bathroom, where I could see it each day as I was getting ready in the morning. Did I read it everyday? No. Actually there were some mornings I saw that paper and wanted to cuss because I was in no mood to recite the verses out loud. Now that I think about it, I think I was more embarrassed that if I did read them out loud, I would be admitting weakness or that I needed help to make it through the day. WHICH ISN’T THAT THE POINT?! The point is we’re human and we’re weak and we cannot make it without a Savior. Can you see my struggle? My perfectionistic self hates admitting weakness and that I can’t do this myself. But the truth is, I can’t.

2018 blog post

So, 2018.

2018 is simplified. I have eight verses attached with my name meanings. I also have two words for the year on this paper. And… I feel as though I should share them with you and why they’re meaningful… so here goes.

“You crown the year with your goodness, and your paths drip with abundance” – Psalm 65:11 (NKJV)

This verse was prayed over me at my 31st birthday dinner by a dear friend. This friend and her sister have been such an encouragement to me throughout my transition back to Tulsa. Every word they spoke with me and prayed over me always had significance and always hit me in the heart (thanks Meg and Caitlin… I could cry over how thankful I am to have you in my life…). When Meg prayed this over me, it resonated deep in my heart. God has already crowned this year with goodness, with peace, with prosperity, with grace, with ALL THE THINGS I NEED. The path he has me on, drips with abundance. If that doesn’t make you SING WITH JOY you need to wake up! This year will be your year of goodness and abundance. It may be sorrowful at times, but God has already crowned you with everything you will ever need. That’s a promise you can cling to.

“Now all glory to God, who is able through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask, think, or imagine” – Ephesians 3:20

I like to add the word dream after think. Why? because God wants us to be asking, thinking, dreaming, and imagining. That’s what he created us for. If you’re not doing those things because you’re scared they won’t come true or they won’t happen, you’re missing the point. God created us and gave us his power. He lives and abides in us, which means, we’re connected. What I’m thinking about has an origin and connection to God. So why would I not ask, think, dream, or imagine what my life could be? Why would I not approach God with boldness that it just might happen and come true? Get out of the bitter barn and play in the hay! (Thanks to Phoebe Buffay for that line). It’s time to step outside the usual “it’s too big” box we’re in and do something different. Approach him and go for the big ask, go for the big dream or goal. Go for the biggest thing you can imagine and let God work.

“Therefore, since we have such a great cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also get rid of every weight and entangling sin. Let us run with endurance the race set before us, focusing on God, the author and perfecter of our faith” – Hebrews 12:1-2

I’m about to admit something that I’m sure you all do too. I like to read the first parts of verses and then stop. Because what if the verse goes on and has something in it I don’t like? Well, this is one of those verses for me. I would stop at “great cloud of witnesses” and think “that’s so cool, God. We’ve got people in our corner. Sweet!” This time, he was like “Hey Linds, read on please. You need this”. I hate this verse. I have to get rid of weights and sins that have me? BUT GOD, THAT MEANS I HAVE TO ACTUALLY DO WORK ON ME…. UGHHHHHHH. Yes. This is the journey we as Christians are on–we never arrive. We are always evolving, always changing, always growing. I feel like these verses are KEY to our walk. I have physical weight I need to lose, of course, but I have spiritual weight I need to deal with and let go of. I am bitter about some stuff, y’all, and it’s not easy for me to admit that. I’ve been mistreated and had my name smeared in the mud. I’ve had church people (I KNOW RIGHT?!) who have not been kind say things about me that really piss me off. I’ve had some challenges come up recently that feel very personal. That is the kind of stuff that can easily entangle us… because it gets our eyes off the God who speaks truth over you no matter what others say and gets us all in a tizzy over the dumb stuff that WHO CARES IF IT’S TRUE OR NOT. Those little things are what slows us down in this journey and causes us to stumble and get tired. I hate running, but if I’m going to be a woman of God who desires to hear him more clearly and show him to those I’m in contact with, I have to get rid of my weights and sins. Will it be a perfect process? Hell no. But I’m going to do my best and that’s all God asks of us.

“Instead, let the spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created like God, truly righteous and holy…” – Ephesians 4:23-24

I know I said above that I like to read the “good parts” of verses and leave out other stuff. This is one of those verses. I love Ephesians. If you looked at Ephesians in my bible, it might make your head spin. It’s colored on, marked up, worn out in certain spaces. But there’s so much in Ephesians that speaks to me. One of the very pieces that I have neglected is renewing my thoughts and attitudes. I didn’t do well at putting on my new nature. I find it funny that the wording of this is “put on your new nature”. It means it’s a decision. You decide how you’ll walk, how you’ll go through situations. (Holy crap… I’m preaching to myself right now… and very much realizing where I faltered this year… LOL. THANKS GOD). It’s a decision to renew your mind and have a new attitude. It is so hard to do that. I can think back to the moments where I did that well. Like at Starbucks. My pick up order took longer to process. I had a good attitude about that. But that work situation or that one kid who said something that was so blatantly not true about how I’m serving them… I did not have a good attitude about that. I dwelled on it too long. It would’ve been so much easier to let go, and rest in the truth I know God speaks over me. But I made the decision to dwell too long in my crappy mood and thoughts about the situation. ((Wow. This is going to be a fun year…. <insert rolling eyes emoji here>))

“We are confident of all this because of our great trust in God through Christ. It is not that we think we are qualified to do anything on our own. Our qualification comes from God” – 2 Corinthians 3:4-5

I have confidence issues. I’m trying to work through them, but every once in awhile they get the best of me. I’ve noticed how my physical confidence is so attached to my inner, psychological confidence. I’ve also noticed how without the influence of the word in my life and in my heart, that psychological confidence can go nowhere fast and send me in a fury of anxiety and turmoil. I’m so thankful for God. I’m so thankful that on my worst day, he sees me as more than enough. He sees me as beautiful. He sees me as qualified. At my last job, I heard a lot about how I was not smart enough or was not qualified. Hearing that on a regular basis would kick anyone while they’re down. I struggled and wrestled constantly with how to proceed. Each time, these verses washed over me–“Linds, you’re qualified. You’re smart. You’re more than able to handle this situation. You’re graced with wisdom. You can do this because I say you can”. I’m pretty sure that’s all the confidence you need, right?!

“God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, through he is not far from any of us” – Acts 17:27

I love Paul. He’s legit. He calls things the way he sees it and speaks truth. In chapter 17, he has been all over Athens and has noticed some things that are striking him in a weird way. He stands up in a meeting with the leaders and people and calls them out for being religious. He tells them he sees the signs saying “to an unknown god” when he knows they know God and that he is real. I love how Paul very plainly tells the people God created us on purpose, with a purpose, at a very purposeful time and he did this so that people would seek him and find him and know he was never far away at any time. How beautiful is that? I love that God is so so near, even when I feel he is so far away, he’s right there. And literally, all I have to do is reach out and he’s right there. Honesty moment: I’m not good at reaching out for him. Goal for this year… reach out. He’s right there and wants me, all of me-the good, the bad, and the ugly.

“Truly my soul waits for God; he only is my rock and salvation; he is my defense. I shall not be moved. In God is my salvation and my glory; the rock of my strength, and my refuge is God. TRUST IN HIM at all times, you people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us” – Psalm 62: 1-2, 5-8

And then there’s these verses. I think God is trying to say something to me about this year, y’all. It has everything to do with letting go and trusting in Him. When I read these verses, I got uncomfortable. I got knots in my stomach. I asked “you meant for another Psalm, right?” But no, this was it. This year is about purposeful growth. I have neglected this part of my spiritual walk for some time because I love to do things my way. If I can make something happen, I will do it. If I can go out and fix something, I’ll do it. Why wait and ask around when you can do it yourself? That mentality does not apply here. There are things that God specifically wants us to wait on him for and I so very often take away that opportunity from myself because I don’t like waiting. I hate the time it takes to see it through. This year, I’m going to be purposeful in waiting on the Lord, on letting him be my true safe place, my true strength and defense. I’m going to trust that he knows what is best for me and will be with me all the way through.

I don’t know if you’ve struggled this last year, but I believe this year will be one of purposeful growth. I know you all have your own thoughts and feelings about the upcoming year. If these verses help you, great! If not, find your own verses for the year. Put them where you can see them. Let them wash over your heart and mind. Be determined that 2018 will be exactly what God has for you. 🙂

Linds

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//i’m back//

Once upon time, there was a girl. She was a pretty girl who was busy and never remembered any passwords and then when she did remember her passwords, she would land in “locked out of your profile” jail. After many months of attempts and many scribbled out notes on notebook paper, receipts, and scrap paper in her planner… SHE RETURNED…

It’s been a while friends, and I’m so thrilled to finally be at a place where I’m not so scared to share my thoughts and musings with you. My last post was one that faced lots and lots of backlash. I was called stupid, liberal, a joke, umm… let’s see… many names that were not appropriate for the everyday human being. I had people texting me and calling me asking me what the hell was I thinking, supporting a “man who looked like a thug” and a “drug addict”. I let a lot of the comments shut that gift of writing down for awhile. Every time I went to write something, I would write it out and when I move my mouse to hit “publish”, knots would form in my stomach. I would feel my heartbeat speed up. My neck and chest would start to itch because hives were beginning to make their way to my face. My ears would turn bring red and hot. And I wouldn’t do it. I would let the fear of what others thought about me stop me from sharing. Not saying I’m all knowing or know anything worth sharing with the world, but it sucked. ABSOLUTELY SUCKED not being able to just write and not care what others thought about it. It’s been months since I’ve written anything. I forgot my password for awhile and almost threw my computer so many times. Then my computer actually crashed and stumped all the Apple geniuses in Tulsa that they had to send it away. When I got it back, I was like “Lord, if my passwords are still in there somewhere, maybe my WordPress password is too. If it’s there, I’ll write. I won’t care what people think. I’m 31 freaking years old and since when do I really need someone’s approval to share what you’ve gracefully placed in my heart?” And lo and behold… I go to log in and there it was. Not saying it’s something magical or anything, but to me, it made sense. God cares about the little things. This was what I call a “little big thing”–Not so big that it’s a HUGE EVENT, and not so small that it’s to be ignored. It’s just the right size where you can’t ignore it. When I pray about the little big things, I know God answers. Because he cares. I actually prayed for my computer. I laid hands on it and cried in bedroom because let’s be honest. I work in mental health and make decent money. But this month… YIKES. Too much was happening. I felt like I owed money left and right. I had nothing extra to spare. When I took my computer to Apple, the genius looked at me and said “it’s a great thing that you came in because your Apple care ends in two days”. That’s Jesus, Y’all. My repairs on my mysterious computer dying situation would’ve cost me $500. I walked out and was like “Jesus… thanks. I love you. Thank you for saving me that money… I don’t know how much money I’ll have at the end of the month, but it’s always more than enough”. That’s enough for me to trust him always…

A lot has happened from the last time I wrote. Here’s a little list…

  1. I got promoted at work. I am now a clinical supervisor in Tulsa.
  2. Oh, I moved. I’m no longer in OKC. I miss it so much, but love being back near my parents and sisters.
  3. I’ve traveled. I’ve been back and forth between Tulsa and Memphis for work, went to NYC for Christmas with my family, planning on going to Dallas in a couple weeks with some wonderful gal pals and plan on taking more vacation days in the coming weeks to recover from…
  4. My boss went on maternity leave and I’ve nearly died several times this summer from exhaustion. Yep. I feel like I know what Mario feels like in Super Mario cart. You know when the little car slips on a banana peel and he loses a life? And then he drives a little further down and gets a life back? That’s my life. I feel like some days I do so well have those extra lives stocked up and then there are those days where I’m slipping on every freaking banana peel and trying not to lose all my marbles. I love my boss because she took time to help me get some boundaries set and then helped me work through the “you do too much for people” syndrome I suffer from. She left for maternity leave and within two days, all that hard work was shot to hell. I’ve spent more hours in the office this summer, gone on no vacations, taken no days off (because I was told I could not if everyone else was), and done more work to make sure my team was taken care of. It’s not bad, but it’s also not great. Self care should be a higher priority for me… especially if I preach it to my team that they should take care of themselves.
  5. I’ve had my heartbroken. I won’t write about it all here right now in this post, but there is a deep post coming and it will probably be one of those soul bearing posts that will hopefully bring encouragement to you that not all who take chances are hopeless. It would’ve been great for this situation to have worked out, but it didn’t and I trusted this guy and because I did, I learned more about my discernment. I learned that my discernment is spot on always and when that first warning comes, I should follow it whole heartedly.
  6. I’ve had a birthday. I’m 31 now and it’s weird. 30 was amazing. I loved everything about being 30. I felt like I entered the best years of my life. As those last weeks of being 30 turned to days, I got kinda sad. I got to my golden birthday and around midnight, I looked up “golden birthday”. Golden birthdays are considered lucky. They are unique and once in a lifetime. (duh, that’s obvious…). I started to dig a bit deeper because I wasn’t satisfied by that. I looked up 31… the meaning of 31. Apparently, when you turn 31, you experience you’re billionth second of life. 31 is considered the year of negotiation, the year of dictating where my attention goes, and the year where I decide that I will not let my thirties pass me by (I added that last sentence). I looked at so many different blogs from girls who turned 31 within this year and they all said the same thing… 31 was the year where they decided to be fearless. Another girl said “31 was the year I knew I was going to put myself in a position to learn from others. It’s the year I decide from the beginning that I will not fight others thoughts and opinions. I will listen and converse and share what I know with others”. Another… “31 is the year of grace for me. I will gracefully allow myself the ability to not be perfect, to not fear, to not act rushed or hurried. I will allow myself space”. And probably the one I needed to see the most–“This is the year I will not make decisions based on my anxiety or fear of what if”. I’ve had a lot of “what if” moments in my life and to be honest, I’ve allowed those what ifs to take over. I let it take over my ability to write here! When the clock struck midnight and it was my birthday–I asked the Lord to give me a uniquely graced year. And so far… He has not disappointed me. This year… 2017… is going to be one for the books!
  7. I’m singing again. Not that I ever quit, but I stopped for awhile because I couldn’t continue to have my heart in two places-Antioch OKC and Guts Church in Tulsa. I made the choice to get planted here in Tulsa. I went to Next Steps at Guts and had an audition with the worship team a week later. I’m so glad I did. The team has quickly become a safe haven of people for me. They are encouragers and dreamers and so fun. To serve with this team is just… it’s beyond what I could’ve asked for. I’ve been apart of lots of teams, but this one at Guts is UNREAL. So thankful for them.
  8. I’m trying to date. KEYWORD is trying. Dating ain’t easy y’all. It’s actually the pits when all the guys want to know is if you’ll sleep with them. I feel like Ryan Gosling’s character in Crazy, Stupid, Love after I read some of these dumb messages. You know the part where he takes Steve Carrell shopping and he asks him where he got his “dad jeans” and Steve says “Oh, I don’t know. The Gap?” and Ryan looks at him in disbelief and says “Be better than the Gap”. I read some of these idiots messages and I’m like “BE BETTER THAN BUMBLE, LINDS. BE BETTER THAN THAT SH*TSHOW TINDER. BE BETTER THAN <INSERT DATING APP HERE>!” Oh, don’t worry. I’ll share the details here. 🙂
  9. I joined a gym. I did. I went through the brief first training and had this very nice guy tell me how out of shape I was and that I have such a long way to go to get to my goals. I’m not going to lie. I left defeated. I’m a curvy girl and I like how I look. I want to be healthy, YES, but I will not do what I did before… I will not starve myself. I will not overexert myself to be apart of the cool crowd. I will not beat myself down for needing more sleep and eating a bowl of ice cream. I will not compete with my sisters because what use is that? I will go to yoga. I will go try a class or two and probably run into people I know and you know what?! I’ll be nice and laugh and feel like a moron with them! Because that’s what you do at the gym. Try new things and risk looking cool to challenge yourself, right?!
  10. I wouldn’t be me without my family. I have had more moments of insanity and blubbering with my parents. I’ve cried more because the kids I’m working with wear on me. Their stories break me in more ways than one. I have felt completely depleted and there is my mom. Ready to let me just let out. There’s my dad… the first one to always hug me and then cry over me saying how proud of me he is. There’s my sister Jess, with a quick witted text finishing off with “no one else can do what you do, Linds… No one better…” There’s my sister Hailey with a prayer or something silly to make sure I’m alive and laughing. These four I am so lucky to call family keep me going… I seriously would not be the person I am without them.

So, as I’ve said before… I’m back. I have lots of stories to tell and maybe I’ll finally publish some of the posts that have been archived for ages while I was too scared to write anything. Here’s to doing things scared. 🙂

//#lindstoOKC//

Hey everyone…

It’s July 4th and I haven’t written in months. Well, I have, but just haven’t posted anything. I feel as though I always begin like this. I always start with the intention that I’m going to keep up with the Kardashians and write my life story to you. And then I inevitably fail. So, I’ve decided that I’m not going to pressure myself into feeling or being anyone other than myself. I have a dedicated group of followers who, for whatever reason, think I’m worth following. That is unreal. I appreciate it so much.

Let’s play catch up.

  1. January-April was TERRIBLE. Absolutely terrible. Why? Because Grad School got real and I almost lost my everliving mind. Grad school is hard. It is, but it is so incredibly rewarding. I am so beyond thankful. I made it. I wrote the damn comprehensive exam. They lost my results, but I passed. And I made it to…
  2. Graduation! I graduated from the university I always wanted to go to. I not only graduated from there but I got into said university and nailed it in every way. I maintained a 4.0 4 of the 5 semesters I was there. I made friends. I attended football games and basketball games as a student. UNREAL experience. I wouldn’t trade that for anything.
  3. Unemployment. You know what people don’t tell you about Grad School? The job hunt is hard, if not harder after you graduate. I was told “you’ll find a job in now time!” Y’all lied. I started the job hunt in true Lindsay fashion–7 months before graduation. I had 2 (yes, ONLY 2) interviews and no 2nd round interviews. I applied for numerous jobs at OU…never heard anything. I approached the graduation deadline with nothing setup and on a whim applied for a company that had openings in Oklahoma and low and behold…
  4. Employment! When I finally came to grips with reality that I probably wasn’t going to get hired outside Oklahoma (I really wanted you Nashville), and just accepted it, the door flew wide open. I went from unemployed with a masters degree, living in my sister’s old bedroom (yeah, it’s still referred as her room even though she hasn’t lived there in almost 2 years) at my parents house to employed in OKC, at a company I feel I dreamed up. It’s unreal. Jesus is so good. SO GOOD.
  5. OKC. Oh. My. Goodness. OKC I’m back! I’ve come to love OKC in a real romantic way. It’s like I went from the comforts of Tulsa, to the comfort of Dad’s stomping grounds in Norman to the real deal of OKC. OKC is this up incoming city that is hidden in many ways. People know OKC because of, DUH, our NBA team (more on that in a second), but there’s something about OKC that stands out to me. I loved it when my sister lived here. Visiting Jess was always an adventure. We did yoga and pilates at a gym down the street from her house. We went to Bleu Garten when it was first starting up. We went to late night movies at the Bricktown theater. We ate ourselves sick at Fuzzy’s and adventured out with friends to different clubs in Bricktown. I can’t wait to keep growing up here in OKC. It’s unreal.
  6. The NBA. “But Linds, do you even know basketball?” Why thank you for asking. Yes, actually I do. I remember watching Karl Malone with the Utah Jazz and how he did a dunk and he ripped his hand up. I remember Michael Jordan running all over people and being the best player ever. I remember Shaq and Charles Barkley. My dad, the ultimate athlete, trained his daughters well. He didn’t have sons, so he watched sports with us. And I’m not mad about it. I’m so thankful. Why? It builds this sense of camaraderie in you. It makes you think you could join a team somewhere, athletic or not, and you could be a force to be reckoned with! I claimed OKC as my NBA when they first came to OKC after being in Seattle. But you didn’t hear much about them until 2010 when they made it to the finals. Then it just built up. There was that one guy Kevin, who was so good at building up his team and his love for home. That one dude Russ wasn’t so bad either. The Thunder became a household name in no time. Families would change their eating locations so they could watch the game and not miss a beat. I’m sure the DVR/Tivo sales went up in Oklahoma when people started taking notice. The last 2 years have been weird for me. I was in a different place, didn’t know a lot of people and I started picking different hobbies. I started crocheting like a 90-year-old grandma because it was easy and fun. I bought lots of coloring books and markers to be one of those cool hipsters who colored instead of sharing their emotions like a regular person. I focused genuine energy in learning about the NBA and College Football. I started interacting more with fans on Twitter. I wrote little things here and there about OKC Thunder and why I loved them. I got to know the players on the team I called my own. Now, today may be the 4th of July, but to Oklahomans, it’s our dark day. It’s the day we lost our boy KD to our ultimate enemy. He’s leaving us for sunny, smell of sea salt air and Ghirardelli Chocolate San Francisco. I’m personally devastated because I did all the research. I listened to all the podcasts. I saw all the numbers that pushed the weight in our favor. “He’s Kevin Durant. He won’t leave us. He loves us too much. He’d never do that to us and to the Warriors? No way…” Well, it’s done. My phone went off like crazy for a solid 15 minutes because it was getting blown up by notification after notification saying my personal nightmare. While I’m happy he’s doing what he feels is right for him, we’re all still here, numb from the sting of our favorite guy, who made us believe we could accomplish what everyone on ESPN said we couldn’t do, and his decision to go. The Thunder means a lot to me. They are my team. If I wasn’t at home, I brought my computer with me and pretended to be taking notes while I watch the game. I set my DVR. I called and conferenced with my dad about how we looked and how Billy Donovan was coaching the game. I went to games with my sister. I bought a pair of KDs and asked for Thunder gear for Christmas. I FREAKING LIVE IN THE CITY WHERE THESE GUYS LIVE AND PLAY. The Thunder means something. Oklahoma is full of dedicated people who, when they commit to something, they COMMIT and HOLD FAST. I’m one of those people. KD, I’ll miss you dude. I really will. You were my guy. I was #35 this entire time. But now, I feel like I got dumped by that idiot I dated in college who told me, AFTER A WEEKEND AWAY WITH HIS FAMILY, I wasn’t fun anymore and he wanted to break up. This stings. You’re not just leaving us, you’re going to the Warriors? I literally can’t with you, dude. I hope you enjoy SF and chasing a ring. But I’m rooting for the guys who now have a MASSIVE CHIP ON THEIR SHOULDER from missing the finals and blowing the 3-1 lead (partly your fault, by the way) and you leaving them. I’m sorry, I’m for the underdog. I’m all for OKC. I want us to get it all and hoist that trophy so high you can’t get the image out of your head. Let’s go OKC. Let’s go get us our moment.

So there’s that. I’m no expert in the game, but I’m a huge fan. I’ve accomplished a lot over the last several months and I’m so looking forward to all the new things that are coming up fast. Nothing better than new things. Oh, and OKC forever.

Linds

 

//love wins//

I want to be real from the get go, so no small talk. Let’s get right to the point.

“This is my commandment: that you LOVE one another…”

As I was settling in last night from an awesome day, I noticed a friend of mine on Twitter talking about how his friends are asking him about the Sigma Alpha Epsilon scandal on campus. I didn’t know what was happening, but my interest was spiked. I fell asleep a little worried. When I woke up this morning, I was running late to a meeting for work, but had my phone out to check the news. And that’s when I saw it.

“…just as I have LOVED you…”

I watched the video. Tears sprang to my eyes as I heard the racial slurs escape the lips of young adult men on a bus surrounded by peers and guests. No one sprang up to put an end to it. No one made a move to shut down the chanting. No one. The second video I saw showed 2 guys: the chant leader and his obvious cohort behind him who tried to get out of the camera’s shot. But again, no one put an end to the chant.

“No one has greater love…”

I had to sit in my car and gather my breath before walking into Crimson and Whipped Cream. As I drove by the North Oval of campus, I couldn’t look past the various media outlets filling the usual spots that staff members claim. I sat and listened in my meeting but all the while, my heart was somewhere else. My heart was with my fellow students who were standing in the rain, peacefully protesting the SAE behavior. I may be a graduate student, but the shameful behavior of one has now attached itself to a university known for its diversity and acceptance of all races and nationalities; a university I have always had in my heart that I now have the privilege of attending. No person should fear walking on campus that they will be hurt or violated because they look or sound different. No young man should have fear that they will be hazed or not even accepted into a certain fraternity because they have a different skin color. This behavior is disturbing and absolutely shameful. What I think happens when students get into their university of choice is they forget that education is in fact a privilege. The one thing I’ve always been thankful for is my freedom of religion and my education. I am a Christian and I make no apologies for that. My education, I’ve had to work for. I’ve had to work very hard to receive my Bachelors degree and now that I am pursuing a Masters degree, I’ve never been so grateful to be chosen to one of the best schools in the nation. As much as I want to think it was because I chose OU, I know OU had to choose me. This proves: education is a privilege. No one can take away your education…after you earned it.

“…than to lay down his own life…”

What these students failed to recognize is 10 seconds is all it takes to demolish the education you’ve worked possible years for. 10 seconds is all it takes to let the words you can’t get back out for all to hear. 10 seconds of chanting, full of racial disregard for HUMAN BEINGS, is all it takes to brand not only yourself and your fellow “brothers”, but your ENTIRE SCHOOL racists and bigots. I am angered by this behavior…but if I really think about it, I’m sad for my fellow students who are now worried about their safety. I almost cried looking through the pictures of the most beautiful students wearing their hearts on their sleeves filling the North Oval with duck tape across their mouths with the word “unheard” etched across it. If there’s one thing I’m learning, it’s that every person, no matter if they are different from myself or not, matters. I am extremely annoyed by these ridiculous idiots from SAE. I am saddened for the guys in the Fraternity who weren’t involved are now paying the price, but the lesson is: if you want to be different, that means you HAVE GOT to start STANDING UP for what’s right.

“…for his friends”–John 15:12-13

What I am incredibly thankful for is my parents. My parents would be the first to say they weren’t the  perfect parents, but in my eyes, they were pretty dang close. I was talking to a friend in my class last week and we had just finished a discussion on discrimination. The issue of race came up. I quickly realized, I was raised in a unique family. My parents never told me or my sisters that we couldn’t be friends with kids of other races. My parents taught us the heart and character of a person is what matters more than what they look like. As I was talking to my friend she made a point to let me know my family is rare. “Linds, as a white family, you guys are rare. I experienced white families that judged me because of my skin color and didn’t want me around their kids. And I came from a great family. Where were you when I was in High School? I would’ve loved having a friend like you…” I am so appreciative that my parents didn’t point out skin color to me. It caused me to really get to know a person and talk to them, rather than judge solely based on what I saw. What I’m also so grateful for is a Savior who said we are to love. Jesus demonstrated that we are to love one another. He didn’t say “love one another…as long as they look like you”. There was no condition attached to it. It’s just LOVE ONE ANOTHER. Love isn’t demonstrated when you allow a chant to continue; it’s demonstrated when you know you’ll be the odd man out for your beliefs and putting an end to racist behavior. It’s demonstrated when you take the time to listen to someone who is different than you so you can better understand their heart. Love is a strong word, but it’s the only word I think of during this racially heated situation. Yes, let’s peacefully protest this behavior, but let us always come back to loving one another. They may not be your friends, but love knows no bounds.

So in light of the current state of SAE and the campus of OU, let’s rally for something that deserves our attention: unity. Let’s be united together and not let the idiocy of 2 frat boys ruin what otherwise could’ve been a great Monday. Let’s show those 2 very narrow-minded individuals what real community looks like. Let’s show them what love can do to a united body of OU students who don’t tolerate racism.

Let love win.

Linds

love-one-another-john

current state…

HELLO WORLD! How’ve ya been?!! 

It’s been a long time coming for a blog post, right?! I need to take this more seriously, because that’s why I spent money purchasing the domain name. I mean seriously. So, as it is January 31st (the last day of January and my half birthday!) I figure I should catch up with the happenings in the world. 

1. Grammys. So I guess Macklemore decided to marry 34 gay couples during his song?! That’s a new one. I have come to the conclusion that there’s nothing we won’t see. There will always been someone who feels their opinion should be THE opinion. Funny how an event meant to show off music has now also become a very interesting playground for opinions and shock and awe. Now, this is not a post directed at whether or not Macklemore is right or wrong to do that. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of watching the Grammys because it’s no longer about the music. It’s about who can do what and who’s tweaking on who and OH MY GOD SHE DID WHAT. I’m also a full time student who doesn’t have time to just watch TV. I don’t. I don’t have cable. I have Netflix, which I watch on a regular basis. When I’m at home, I’m writing papers and trying to finish my requirements so I can graduate. That takes more energy than sitting around watching a show that isn’t so much about music. It’s sad that it’s about everything BUT music. <insert shoulder shrug here> Also, it should be known that I’m just not a fan of Macklemore. I’m not. I don’t like rap. I don’t like listening to music that I can’t sing to and if one of the lines in your song talks about how Christians “paraphrase a book written over 3500 years ago” I automatically will turn it off. Dude, I get it. You have a MAJOR opinion about how Christians are and what we think. Macklemore doesn’t know me and I actually appreciate that book called THE BIBLE that was written oh so long ago. I love people, but I don’t always agree with everyone. Even my closest friends and I have differing opinions. I still love them even though we don’t agree. I’m sure several readers will have an “issue” with this point, but you know what, you are entitled to it. I’m not here to change you. This blog bears my name, and I want to do my best to share what I think. I might not be right and might not have a lot of followers, but if the reason I wrote was to gain followers, that’s a problem. So, before you go damning me to hell, consider this: if your friend had a differing opinion from your own, would you yell and scream and point fingers trying to prove how right you are, or encourage some conversation and learn more about each other or would you walk away? I have had many moments of paralyzing fear being confronted by people who think I’m wrong and just want to tell me that and you know what? I let them back me into a corner. Now, I’m more open to talking and hearing you and creating an atmosphere of dialogue, where even if we don’t make any headway either direction, at least we can say we talked it out and walked away thinking. 

2. Amanda Knox. This chick is crazy. I can’t tell if she’s guilty or not. It’s a GREAT thing that I’m not a lawyer or on any jury. I don’t know what I would think looking at this girl. She’s 26 years old and was tried once and found innocent of murder, but due to another trial, she’s now guilty. Something is not lining up. It must suck going through something and serving part of your “sentence in Italy” and then being found innocent and now, going through it all again, you’re guilty? Wow. Just wow. 

3. Oh Justin Bieber. Oh Canada, what have you done to us. This kid when he first came to the US was a cute, little pre-teen who had pipes of gold. He had some AMAZING people in his life that got him where he is. He had FREAKING USHER helping launch his career! And then, enter the ridiculous teen years. I remember the first accusation of “he’s my baby’s daddy” and I actually thought “NO! NOT JUSTIN!” I really, really liked the kid. He was the ultimate dream catcher. He had it all and then suddenly, or not so suddenly, it’s all crumbling down. Listen, I grew up with Joe and Barb Davis. If you don’t know them, here’s a taste of my childhood: My mom had a rule. My sisters and I can all tell you this by heart. The rule was “If it looks like you have an attitude, you have an attitude. If it looks like disobedience, it’s COMPLETE disobedience. If it looks like something different from what you’ve shared with me, it’s a lie. Be honest. Be the girl we’ve raised you to be: one of honesty, integrity, and character”. Hey Justin, you threw eggs and got caught. You decided to drag race and have lots of interesting things in your car with you. You got arrested. SERIOUSLY dude. GET IT TOGETHER. We can’t keep saying “Oh, it’s because he didn’t have a normal childhood/teenage life”. Uhhh can I get a free pass to act like a total witch because I had a hard year last year?! NO! That doesn’t work! Bro, just because you’re in Hollywood doesn’t mean you can just say “It’s because I didn’t grow up with a normal childhood/father/whatever reason”. YOU CHOSE THIS LIFE. Make better choices. Geez. 

4. Super Bowl… Yep. I LOVE football. I LOOOOOOOOOOOVE IT. I love the camaraderie from the school or state that the team is from. In my case, I was raised an OU Sooner. I was raised with crimson and cream everything. My uncles and dad played at the wonderful University of Oklahoma. I can’t tell you how many games and tail gates we went to. I know Norman like the back of my hand. I even have the picture taken under the “Lindsey Street” sign. “But Lindsay, the Super Bowl is for the pros! DUH!” Oh I know. And I’ve always been a Broncos fan. I tried liking the Colts (because a boy I liked loved the Colts… HAH. That didn’t last long). I also liked the Patriots because Wes Welker played for them (he is a distant cousin on my dad’s side. We are related and no, he does not know I exist). But, I lived in Denver (specifically, Littleton) when I was growing up. I went to Broncos games with my dad and went to several Nuggets games too. We have a Broncos jersey that has DAVIS on the back. It’s totally cheesy but we loved Colorado. I don’t pretend to know NFL teams, but I know Peyton Manning and Wes both play for the Broncos and I plan on wearing some Broncos gear to church on Sunday. Yes, to church. It’s fun. I love taking part in games and having fun hanging out with friends. Football is a staple in America and it’s fun to celebrate the wins and ignore the losses. I know that there’s a chance my team may not win, but I’m still going to have fun and celebrate as if they did! All this to say, have fun with it. Enjoy the food and fun of it. And I think we can all be happy that we’re not playing in the super cold polar vortex temperatures. 🙂 

Have a good night friends… Here’s to an even better February! 

Linds

Christmas Favorites…

It’s December. 

There are 5 days until Christmas. 

I am almost done shopping. My last stop-going to Bass Pro because, in the words of my mom, “she wants to live there, so anything from there will do”. 

There are things that are my favorite about this time of year and the list will begin…. NOW! ((ps-My sister Jessica will be writing more on this later… and I’ll give her the proper introduction later… 🙂 LOVE HER though and you will too…))

1. Christmas Music: Is there anything better than 24/7 Christmas music?! I don’t think so! Every time I put my car key in the ignition, I know what will be playing on the other side of that turn… “Have a Holly Jolly Christmas”, or “Merry Christmas Darling”, or “Do They Know It’s Christmas Time”… any of these can instantly put me in the mood. Although, if I hear “Christmas Shoes” one more time, I may hit someone. 

2. Online Shopping: Never having to leave my apartment or put on makeup or real clothes is my idea of a great day. The very thought of going to the mall 5 days before Christmas makes me start sweating. I don’t like the hustle and bustle like my dad and sisters do. Big crowds scare me for some reason. So I will gladly use the online offers I receive to shower all my family with gifts. I do love being a smart shopper. 

3. Family time and traditions: for the last several years, my family has followed specific traditions. It was my Sophomore year in high school that we started going to see movies on Christmas Day. We would put on some of our new clothes and venture out to the movie theatre and laugh until we cried. We sisters always sleep in the same room on Christmas Eve and spend time watching movies, reading, talking about the last year we’ve just went through and fall asleep at 2 or 3 in the morning. We wake up, hair an absolute wreck, faces still with the imprints of blankets and stuffed animals on them, glasses, and make coffee and sit, staring at all the gifts that fill our living room. We always make Dad be Santa, because we girls are useless in the morning and we tend to throw gifts at each other, and while it makes us laugh, my parents tend to frown upon that. We take pictures with Buster and patiently wait for Mom to decide what to make for breakfast. It was last year we started a new tradition, that while I know it will be so painfully beautiful to do, it will mean the world to my dad, my cousin Bo and my aunt Fran. Last year, I had no idea would be the last Christmas I’d spend with my Uncle Steve. I remember what he was wearing at the First Baptist Christmas service. He was wearing his nice jeans, a blue Ralph Lauren button down with his bright red Ralph Lauren sweater over it and his black overcoat. He saved me a seat right next to him and said “I never hear you sing, so this is why you’re sitting with me. You will sing these Christmas carols with all the gusto you can muster, you hear me?!” and gently nudged my elbow and winked his usual Uncle Steve greeting to me. I remember taking it all in and loving being with my family. This was a memory that I would regularly dream about for months to come. The tears that would inevitably follow were happy tears. Tears that what I always wanted (to go to church with my uncle and aunt and experience what they regularly experienced) was happening. Uncle Steve was truly happy. As I write this my heart is in my throat and feels like someone is holding my lungs with the tightest grip I’ve ever felt. I don’t talk about it often, unless I’m with my mentor/psychologist, but when I do, I’m able to smile now. Family traditions are irreplaceable. Make lots and lots of them this year. You need to take time to just take it all in. 🙂 Trust me. You won’t regret it. 

4. Uncle Dave’s rule: when I was growing up, my grandparents lived in San Francisco and we would travel out there every other year. My Uncle Dave was the crazy fun uncle who whenever he would show up, the party came along with him! The Christmas Rule started when I was about… 5 or 6 years old… and went something like this: “Ok kids, if any of you get an article of clothing, you must put it on! The more you get, the better it looks! It’s all about the layers baby!” I remember wearing my favorite Cinderella nightgown and getting outfit after outfit after outfit. By about outfit number 5, I may have started to cry while Jess was very graciously throwing gift wrap at me. Ahhhh yes, the family rules… 🙂 

5. Christmas Eve: It’s the holiday season and you all need to know that my mom is one of the best cooks (like she uses butter, white flour, all the things I’ve very carefully weaned myself off of for the last year kinda good cook) and she goes all out on Christmas Eve. We get chicken nuggets, fruit salad, shrimp cocktail, chips, salsa, and queso, and tons of sweet things. We pile our plates and sit and talk about the last year and then, we bring out the best Christmas movies EVER. We start with The Christmas Story, White Christmas, The Holiday, Holiday Inn and of course, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation! Welcome to a Davis Christmas Eve.

Of course these are just 5 things, but there will be more and from a different set of eyes. Jess is a gem and I can’t wait to read what she sees every Christmas. 🙂 

Happy December 20th friends.