What Am I Teaching My Girls?

I really try not to get involved in too many political things on social media, because we no longer live in a world where you can have your opinion, I can have mine, and we still walk out the door, friends who just don’t agree on everything. For some reason we have all become liberals, conservatives, racists, bigots, tea party nut jobs, socialists, greedy, welfare handouts and the list goes on. Where do we draw the line?

Recently, I had my status blown up, and my phone about wanting to buy my daughters swimsuits from Target. First off, have you seen the cuteness that Target sells? They make it hard to walk in there with one thing in mind and not walk out with a brand new summer wardrobe for both your 3 year old and 1 year old, but I digress. This whole bathroom issue really struck at the core of what I feel and believe, and where I stand as someone who is a professed follower of Christ. As I sit back and look at some of the reaction of Christians, whether its boycotting or walking into Target with their Bible and tribe of kids in tow, I can’t help but wonder, are we walking this example out in every other facet of our life?

I have two little girls who watch everything that I do, my 3 year old mimics me to no end, she is my little shadow. As I watch her repeat things I say and do, it makes me questions my actions, my responses, the way I talk about issues and things going on in our society. We are called to love the sinner hate the sin, that doesn’t mean screaming from the rooftops in someones face they are going to hell, that means loving them, praying for them, being there for them, even if you disagree with them on issues. I have friends from numerous walks of life, political affiliations, socioeconomic backgrounds, races, religions, gender and so on, I love each of them and the ones I am close to I let them know I am praying for them when they are going through something, or being there when they need someone to talk to. If I decide to pick and choose who to allow to be close to me, who to allow to be in my life, who to allow to have a relationship with me, what am I teaching my little shadows? Am I teaching them to surround yourself with people exactly like you, people who think like you, act like you, look like you and talk like you? Am I teaching them its completely ok to boycott some things, but not others who may have the exact same policy, but have not come out as heavily as Target about it? For those that don’t know, Targets policy has not changed, they just restated what it has always been, and FYI they arrest a man who dressed as a woman and peeped on people last year and had him prosecuted. This isn’t something they just decided to jump on, but for those of us so heavily determined on this boycott everyone who has this practice, have you really looked into the list of companies that are LGTB friendly and scored 100% on being such? As I write this, I don’t want people to assume that I am just sitting here throwing my faith and what I believe out the window, not in the slightest, but I do believe that we are called to look at the log in our own eye before looking at the speck in others, that we are all sinners living in a fallen world and deserving of death, and that by the absolute grace and mercy of God, He has given us hope for eternal life with Him. That doesn’t mean that all of the sudden the whole world is against us, it just means that this is just our temporary home, our home in a fallen world that we are called to be light in.

When I look through this entire debate, the same things come up:

  • Why would I send my girls into a restroom where men could be?
  • This is opening a door for sexual predators
  • Now any man can walk into a women bathroom/changing room ect… no questions asked and he has every right and thats putting my family in danger.

My question is, why do only girls matter? Young men are sexually abused and assaulted every single day by other men, and I don’t see us freaking out about that, or the fact that women can go into the mens restrooms? There was a story a number of years back about a mom who went in to check on her teenage daughter who had been in the bathroom at a mall a little long and she walked in to her daughter being drugged and pulled out of the stall by a woman. Sex traffickers come in all genders. The other question I would pose, is as we begin to protest all these gun laws and the government coming to take our right to bear arms, we sit back and say it doesn’t matter to criminals if there are guns or not, they will find a way to get them. How is this different when it comes to bathroom policies? All of the sudden a child molester or sexual predator thinks to themselves that NOW they can go into a restroom or dressing room of the opposite sex?

Why are we allowing fear of what could happen run our lives? There are many things that could happen to any of us. My husband is a pharmaceutical rep, he drives up to 3 hours away sometimes, he could die today on the way home, does that mean I don’t ask him what he would like for dinner tonight? If my daughters want to leave town for college one day, am I going to let the fear of not knowing where they are all the time dominate my mind? I have to trust that I have raised two girls who love the Lord and who are going to do their best to live their lives to serve Him, KNOWING they will fall short, KNOWING they will be tested and tried, KNOWING that He has a wonderful plan for their lives. What am I teaching them in these precious moments? Am I teaching them to fear every man that walks by them on the street? Every person they are standing next to in a bathroom? Every dressing room door they hear open or shut? If they are watching me, and this is how I act, how I live, all I am teaching my girls is fear, anxiety, and judgement, the very things I am told not to do.

I am the most messed up person I know, I suffer from depression, anxiety, trust in others, and so many other things. I have been hurt so deeply that it is hard for me at times to grow close to people for fear of them not being a true friend, and I tend to pull away as I get close sometimes. The people who have hurt or abused me have never been the people that I didn’t know, it has always been someone I trusted, someone I looked up to, someone I was close with, hence my fear of losing friendships or being betrayed. Why would I ever want to pass those traits on to my daughters? Do I want them to be cautious in life, yes. Do I want them to live life to its fullest, you bet, and you cannot do that with your life dominated by fear of what could be or what could happen. The thing I love about my home, is my girls have my husband to look at, a man who loves everyone, believes the best in everyone, and prays for everyone, no matter what. He sees the good in all things from the most amazing lightning storm, to the tiniest blade of grass that is unusually green, he has such a positive outlook on life, but is the same time cautious and prays over major decisions. I pray my girls model him.

We as Christians are given such an amazing opportunity in this world, to love, befriend, care for and pray for our fellow man, and we only get one shot in this short life we are given. Making sure I instill a fear of man and anyone who disagrees with my beliefs is definitely not on the list of things I hope to pass down to my girls. Caution, aware of surroundings, knowing where you are and letting people know where you are going, thats one thing, but refusing to step foot into a store because there is the possibility that someone all of the sudden had the thought to commit a crime they wouldn’t have committed before is not something I want them to think overtime they go somewhere or anytime they meet someone. I want each opportunity they have to be a chance to show Christ’s love, I want people to wonder why they have so much joy in their life, I want them to have conviction and stand up for that conviction, but that doesn’t mean cherry pick the companies and places with who is the “It” place to boycott for today on social media. I am all for standing up for what we believe in, but in a day in age where we as Christians are seen as hypocrites who are speaking one thing and doing another, we cannot pick and choose which company or cause we feel like protesting, we must stand by our convictions and words, realizing that we need to do our research and boycott like minded companies if it truly goes against our personal convictions. We also need to remember in this that we are called to be light in darkness and remember the people Jesus would hang out with when He walked this earth, He didn’t pick and choose the people He thought would be good for His cause, He loved and reached out to everyone, from the healthy to the lame, rich and poor, criminals and law abiding citizens.

My pastor said in a sermon a few weeks back that many people want to go back to when America was great and he posed the question of when would that be? We continue to say we need to go back to the days of Christian values, but if we go back to when prayer was allowed in school, then we are going back to segregation as well. If we go back to a time where prohibition was in place, then you are also go back to more corruption and greed then we could imagine. Prayer not being in our schools isn’t the problem, alcohol isn’t the problem, drugs isn’t the problem, neither is what bathroom someone uses, the problem is we are all fallen people, living in a fallen world, praying for a Savior to rescue us, all the while, many of us, turning our back on the same people who need rescuing by a Savior, just like we once did.